Why Is Mental Health Important? | Why Is Mental Health Important?

Why Is Mental Health Important?

Mental Health

Tamika Lewis April 11, 2022

One of the most underrated issues in our society is the impact of psychological disorders. People overlook their importance and dismiss those who struggle. We need to do better in reaching out to help others, but to do that, we must answer one question first – why is mental health important? Why do we need to talk about this topic more?

Explaining why mental health is important can turn out to be a very long article. Still, the most efficient way to approach this issue is to talk about the impact that mental health crisis can have on a person and society. If you don’t take care of yourself mentally, you open Pandora’s box full of problems that can affect every aspect of your life.

Why Is Mental Health Important? Here Are the Key Reasons, According to Research

Why is taking care of your mental health important – what happens if you don’t? It might not be visible at first, but neglecting your emotional wellbeing will eventually turn out to have a huge impact on your physical health, social, professional, and romantic life. There isn’t literally anything that a bad state of mind can’t affect – which is why we have to treat it as an illness it really is, rather than minimize the struggle people face.

Why Is It Important to Learn the Basics About Mental Health From Reliable Resources?

Here’s the catch with psychological disorders – they’re not noticeable from day one. It’s not like when you catch a cold or break your leg – these things would be pretty hard to miss. But issues like symptoms of anxiety and depression are often hard to spot if you don’t know anything about them.

That’s why awareness matters – the more you know, the more likely you are to realize that a loved one is struggling. Plus, you will easily recognize the symptoms in yourself and start wondering whether you should see a therapist. But make sure you use reliable resources, so you’ll get the correct information – we all know how many misconceptions about mental illness are out there.

Smiling African American woman
Why is it important to have good mental health? It affects everything you can think of

Suicide Rates Are Directly Linked to Mental Health Awareness

The most crucial reason why illness like depression (or anxiety) is important – professional help and support can often mean the difference between life and death. According to CDC, suicide is the leading cause of death in the US. Every 11 minutes, someone commits suicide. There were around 46,000 deaths in 2020, and the number of attempts is significantly higher – about 1.2 million people! It affects all ages and ethnicities, but some groups have higher suicide risk:

  • Victims of child abuse,
  • Victims of sexual violence,
  • Victims of bullying,
  • Army veterans,
  • Queer individuals.

This is a severe public health problem, and awareness can lower these horrible rates. Having a solid support system from family and friends, in addition to adequate medical intervention, can make a huge difference.

Sad African American woman sitting on the bed and holding her head
Awareness and support matter - they can save lives

Mental Health Affects Your Physical Wellbeing

The state of your mind and self-care drastically impact your physical health – they are more connected than one might think. If you’re dealing with stress, your body suffers – it produces more stress hormones, which can negatively affect many organ systems. Also, your immune system gets weaker, and you’re more prone to illness. Anxiety disorders and depression make you feel weak. Thus, you’re less likely to exercise and stay active.

What Are the Most Common Symptoms People Are Quick to Dismiss?

Some disorders cause subtle symptoms that you might even overlook, like headaches. Oftentimes, people experience physical manifestation that is noticeable but isn’t linked to mental illness because of stigma or lack of knowledge in the medical community. What happens on a physical level when there’s no self-care and wellness? Here are some of the most common symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression:

  • Weakness and fatigue,
  • Shortness of breath,
  • Palpitations (pounding of the heart),
  • Shaking hands,
  • Excessive sweating,
  • Insomnia and other sleep issues,
  • Nausea and stomach pain,
  • Digestive issues.

Your Productivity Can Suffer if Your Mental Health Gets Bad

This is sort of given, but let’s mention it either way. Those with a poor state of mind aren’t at their best when it comes to work and productivity. They just don’t have enough energy to care about much else than getting through the day. It’s not on purpose – they can’t help it. And that’s precisely why we need to destigmatize psychiatric illness and use every possibility we can to raise our voices. Social media’s impact has been especially valuable in this battle.

Lower Productivity Leads to Financial Instability

Lack of energy can lead to work stress and issues in the workplace – so it’s no surprise that these issues often lead to poor financial stability. According to WHO, around 200 million workdays are lost every year due to depression alone. Now imagine the impact these diseases have when you add anxiety and other psychiatric issues to the mix.

Depressed African American woman sitting at the desk, looking at a paper
Many resources cite lack of productivity as one of the main issues in these diseases

Overall Quality of Life Decreases in Individuals With Untreated Psychological Disorders

Psychiatric issues affect all the aspects of your personality – they make you believe you have no worth, cause, and reason to be on this Earth and enjoy everything life has to offer. So, eventually, you stop enjoying things you love – your social connections go down the drain, you stop pursuing your ambitions, and you stop having fun with your hobbies.

Exploring new possibilities and going on adventures also become nearly impossible – you’re anxious and fearful of everything, and you can’t even make yourself get out of the house. And it’s not like you want this to happen – you probably don’t even notice changes in the beginning stages. But if you let things go and don’t begin with therapy sessions or medication, the invisible disease can make you so emotionally and physically exhausted that you have trouble just getting out of bed in the morning.

Depressed Asian woman sitting on a sofa
Emotional wellbeing can be affected by stress and psychological disorders

Relationships With Others and Social Life Can Also Suffer

If you’re mentally ill, you often withdraw from others – gatherings make you anxious, or you simply have no will to bother with them anymore. Hanging out with friends and family doesn’t bring you any satisfaction anymore – even if you have their support and you’re close. You might even have relationship issues.

Some medical resources say that depressed individuals in severe cases don’t even find happiness in their children anymore. Their emotional state is entirely ruined by the disease. So, we must use every opportunity to bring awareness and prevent this.

Sad Asian woman sitting on the sofa
Lack of mental and emotional wellbeing makes you withdraw from social situations

When Is the Time to Reach Out for Help?

How will you know when to reach out to others and confide in them about your problem? It doesn’t have to be a therapist at first – maybe you’re not ready for your first therapy appointment yet. Even so, if you don’t feel well in any way – you’re stressed out, anxious, or experiencing drastic mood swings – it’s a good idea to talk to anybody. Reach out to family members or friends – talking about your struggle can do more than you might think. That’s the first step – after that, it would be wise to consider finding a therapist.

African American women smiling
Sharing your thoughts and issues with loved ones can do you a lot of good

Therapy Can Get Things Back to Normal

Self-love and wellness can only get you so far – at some point, you will need professional help. Therapy can do you a lot of good and improve many symptoms you might be experiencing. Even if you think you’re not that unwell that you need a therapist, trust us – everyone could use therapy sessions. They are one of the most healing things you can do for yourself.

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