There are a wide number of causes that can contribute to problems with mental health and ongoing mental illnesses. The latest research shows that mental illnesses can be caused by a combination of psychological, environmental and biological factors.
Some causes of mental illness
Some mental illnesses are caused by the malfunction of pathways and nerve cells within the brain, causing a lack of the chemicals needed by the brain’s neurotransmitters. Genetic causes can also be a factor in mental illnesses, as these type of disorders often run in families. Other factors that can contribute to the development of mental illnesses include stress, trauma or abuse, poor nutrition and a range of environmental factors. Some potential environmental factors that can trigger mental illness include divorce, dysfunctional family and social life, low self-esteem and feelings of inadequacy, moving school or jobs, substance abuse, alcohol abuse, gambling and feeling unable to meet societal or cultural expectations.
The global rise in mental illnesses makes it imperative for everyone to nurture their mental wellbeing at all times, in efforts to avoid developing mental problems and also recognize them, if they should occur.
Tips for mental well-being
Taking care of your own health also means focusing on your mental well-being in order to remain as healthy as possible. Some things that are recognized as helping maintain stable mental health include:
Ensuring you get enough sleep
Sleep is just as important for mental health as it is for physical good health and helps regulate chemicals within the brain. Lack of sleep often causes individuals to feel stressed, anxious or depressed.
Follow a healthy diet and try to avoid too much caffeine
This can be particularly important for anyone who gets stressed or nervy. Eating a balanced diet helps ensure your body receives all the nutrients, minerals and vitamins it needs to perform at peak levels. It’s been shown that deficiencies of iron and vitamin B12 can lead to mood disorders.
Get out in the sun as much as possible, any time of year
Sunlight causes the body to create vitamin D, which can be very important in maintaining mood levels as it helps with the release of serotonin and endorphins in the brain. Between 30 minutes and two hours of sunlight is recommended on a daily basis, but, of course, you should always follow safe practice with regards to skin and eye protection, as UV light can be damaging. Lack of sun in winter can result in a depressive illness, known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
Cut out tobacco, alcohol and drugs
These can all impact on mental health in a detrimental way. Excess alcohol can lead to low levels of concentration and anxiety or depression. It can also create thiamine deficiencies. Thiamine is very important for the brain’s functioning. Smoking regularly causes the body and brain to go into a state of withdrawal between cigarettes and this can make you anxious or irritable. Substance abuse very often causes low mood and anxiety, while severe effects can be delusions or paranoia. It’s also believed that drug abuse can lead to the development of schizophrenia.
There you have it: some simple tips to help maintain your mental well-being and reduce chances of mental illness. You can find more tips on maintaining mental well-being at the following website (10 tips to maintain mental health).