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Mental Health Disorders: Causes and Symptoms

Mental health disorders is a name that covers a broad range of disorders. However, the common characteristic among them is the individual’s personality, the thought process, and social interactions. These characteristics are all affected and are difficult to diagnose unlike in the case of physical illnesses. According to data from reputable sources, approximately 20% of Americans are suffering from a mental disorder, out of which 5% are have a severe condition that affects their daily aspects of life such as school and work.

[su_quote class=”cust-pagination”]“If you trade your authenticity for safety, you may experience the following: anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief.”  Brené Brown [/su_quote]

 What are the different types of mental health disorders?

Mental health disorders can occur in various forms. Also, the symptoms may overlap each other, making the disorder difficult to diagnose. There are common disorders that affect people of all ages. The following are different types of mental health disorders:

 Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

This is characterized by the inability to remain focused on a single task, impulsive behavior, excessive activity or the inability to stay still. The disorder is common in young children but also has the potential to affect adults.

 Anxiety/panic disorder.

People with this condition often display intermittent and regular attacks of excessive fear of a mishap or a sense of something wrong happening.

 Bipolar disorder.

This condition causes a periodic exchange of emotional states which can vary from manic and depressive phases. The manic phases are commonly characterized by heightened activity and extreme emotions while the depressive phases can be lethargic and full of sadness. The phases do not occur instantly.


Depression covers various conditions that are commonly defined by regular bad mood, the lack of interest in pursuing daily life, and bouts of lethargy and fatigue. Another form of depression, which is longer-lasting is known as Dysthymia.


This is a condition where the individual loses touch with the reality, and he or she hears voices or has multiple personalities. Schizophrenia can leave the individual feeling paranoid and with the belief in elaborate conspiracies.

 Causes of mental disorders

Until now, no single cause has been attributed to mental health disorders. They can be as a result of a combination of biological, psychological, and environmental factors. People with a family history of mental health disorders are generally more prone to developing one of these conditions at some point in their lives.

The chemistry of the brain can result from substance abuse or changes in diet, bringing about changes. Psychological and environmental factors such as upbringing and social exposure can lay the foundations for the destructive thought patterns associated with mental health disorders. A certified mental health professional is the best person who can provide a proper diagnosis of the causes of a particular mental health disorder.

 What are the signs of a mental health disorder?

Mental health disorders exist in various categories. These include anxiety disorders, mood disorders, psychotic disorders, impulse control disorders, and personality disorders. A person can be considered as having a mental disorder if he or she displays unexplainable changes in mood, showing a lack of interest in socializing, inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality, or a lack of control. These are not the only symptoms.

People with mental health disorders will also display a set of emotional health problems such as:

  • –Changes in mood.
  • –Erratic thinking.
  • –Chronic anxiety.
  • –An exaggerated sense of self-worth.
  • –Impulsive actions.

Mental health disorders do not have any physical symptoms. However, depression can cause weight loss, fatigue, and loss of libido among some people.

[su_quote class=”cust-pagination”]“People with BPD are like people with third degree burns over 90% of their bodies. Lacking emotional skin, they feel agony at the slightest touch or movement.” ― Marsha M. Linehan[/su_quote]

If left untreated, mental health disorders can have short term and long term effects on the stability of the individual. However, if health care providers are contacted immediately, people can get the necessary treatment to return to their normal lives.

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