The term psychological illness refers to a range of feelings and thoughts that are different from what is normal for a person. They may cause distress or get in the way of daily living and social activities. These feelings can be caused by a range of factors, including stressors and trauma, relationships, substance abuse, medical conditions and lifestyle choices. They can also be a sign of a more serious mental health condition.
If you have a mental illness, treatment is available. Your healthcare provider will work with you to create a plan that fits your specific needs. Treatment usually includes some type of therapy and medication. Medication helps manage your symptoms and can improve your overall well-being. Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, can help you learn more about your illness and how to cope with it. You can receive psychotherapy in a one-on-one setting or in a group. There are several types of psychotherapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal psychotherapy. There is even a form of psychotherapy called psychoanalysis, which addresses the underlying conflicts that may be contributing to your disorder.
You may need to take medications as prescribed by your healthcare provider. These medications may be used alone or in combination with other treatments. Some examples of medications include mood-stabilizers, antidepressants and antipsychotics. Mood-stabilizers are often used to treat bipolar disorders, which involve alternating episodes of mania and depression. Antipsychotics are typically used to treat schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders.
Sometimes, your mental health disorder will require psychiatric hospitalization. This is often recommended when you are at risk of hurting yourself or others, and if you need to be closely monitored, accurately diagnosed or have your medicines adjusted. You will probably receive therapy and other support services in a psychiatric hospital.
Other types of treatments include support groups and alternative medicine, such as meditation, yoga and acupuncture. Support groups can help you connect with people who have the same type of mental illness as you. You can find these groups in your community or online. Alternative medicine can be helpful as well, but it is important to discuss any new techniques or practices with your therapist before trying them on your own.
Getting the right treatment can help you overcome your mental illness and get back to having healthy, fulfilling relationships, a meaningful career and a full life. But remember, recovery is a journey that requires time. It’s not a quick fix, and you will likely need to continue treatment for the rest of your life. Your recovery will be more successful if you are active in your own care and take steps to stay well. Also, know that you did not do anything to cause your mental illness, and that it is not your fault. It is important to have family and friends who are supportive. You may want to join a support group for people with mental illnesses or attend a family education program. Some people find relief from their symptoms through a variety of other activities, such as exercise, dietary changes and hobbies.