Mental health and well being.This is a major burdon to our society.
What is mental health
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices.
Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
Over the course of your life, if you experience mental health problems, your thinking, mood, and behavior could be affected. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:
- Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
- Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
- Family history of mental health problems
Early Warning Signs
If you or someone you know is living with mental health problems? Experiencing one or more of the following feelings or behaviors can be an early warning sign of a problem:
- Eating or sleeping too much or too little
- Pulling away from people and usual activities
- Having low or no energy
- Feeling numb or like nothing matters
- Having unexplained aches and pains
- Feeling helpless or hopeless
- Smoking, drinking, or using drugs more than usual
- Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried, or scared
- Yelling or fighting with family and friends
- Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
- Having persistent thoughts and memories you can’t get out of your head
- Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
- Thinking of harming yourself or others
- Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work.
good mental health and well being.
Good mental health and well being mean different things to different people and every person has to find their own way to a life that is meaningful and satisfying for them.
Things that can contribute to positive mental health and well being include:
- spending quality time with close friends and family
- working in a job or finding an activity that is meaningful, which can provide a sense of purpose
- learning a new skill such as painting, singing, knitting, or a foreign language which can provide a sense of pride and achievement
- finding a hobby (such as gardening, playing sport, cooking, or arts and craft)
- giving to others by volunteering, being there for friend in need, or caring for animals
- having someone to talk to who can provide support and reassurance
- eating healthily and exercising regularly
- spending time with people who share similar interests
- experiencing new things such as trying different foods, travelling, or meeting new people.
Ways to improve your mental health and well being
Learn to relax and do things you enjoy
Having something to look forward to promotes positive mental health and well being. Everyone is different, so find out what works for you.
Relaxing activities may include:
- listening to music
- watching TV
- playing video games
- practicing relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga.
- mindfulness techniques are helpful to manage anxiety and negative or intrusive thoughts
- catching up for drinks with a friend
- play with pets
- going shopping.
Exercise is a great way to improve your negative mood. Do whatever you enjoy doing that gets you active, for example:
- ride a bike
- go for a walk (or run)
- go for a swim at the beach or a pool
- play a sport you like
- kick a football with friends
- try yoga
- take up a martial art
- join a team (rugby, footy, netball etc).
- try to eat a healthy, balanced diet, as it will make you feel calmer
- eating regular meals will give you energy and will regulate your blood sugar levels
- eating plenty of fruit and vegetables will make you feel healthier. Reducing your sugar intake is better for your health
- avoid alcohol and other drugs as they can worsen the symptoms of mental health problems.
Get enough sleep
- if you are tired, you are more likely to feel stressed and worried
- aim for around 8 hours per night to avoid feeling tired
- get into a good bedtime routine: wind down by drinking a glass of milk or cup of herbal tea, read a book or listen to relaxing music before going to bed
- try going to sleep and getting up at the same time each day
- avoid caffeinated drinks after lunch time.
Stay connected and keep in touch with families and friends
Feeling connected to people is an important part of staying well. It can help you feel confident and valued, and it can support you during difficult times. A lack of contact with others makes people feel lonely and disconnected.
- even if you are not contributing to conversations, stay around people
- spend time on relationships you are interested in
- care and support other people
- talk to family and friends and discuss your experiences, worries and feelings
- visit your GP if you have any physical or mental health concerns.
Join a local community group in something that interests you. This will also allow you to meet people who have similar interests, for example:
- find a self–help group, as talking to people who have similar feelings can be a huge support
- join a craft group
- join a meditation or relaxation group
- learn a new hobby through an adult education course