Mental Disorders

Also called: Mental illness

Mental disorders include a wide range of problems, including

There are many causes of mental disorders. Your genes and family history may play a role. Your life experiences, such as stress or a history of abuse, may also matter. Biological factors can also be part of the cause. A traumatic brain injury can lead to a mental disorder. A mother's exposure to viruses or toxic chemicals while pregnant may play a part. Other factors may increase your risk, such as use of illegal drugs or having a serious medical condition like cancer.

Medications and counseling can help many mental disorders.

Symptoms of Mental Disorders

The following features are indicative of Mental Disorders:
  • unusually intense emotion
  • changes in sleep patterns and activity levels
  • unusual behaviors
  • persistent sad or anxious mood
  • feeling of hopelessness
  • irritability
  • feeling of guilt, helplessness or worthlessness
  • loss of interest or pleasure in activities and hobbies
  • decreased energy or fatigue
  • talking or moving more slowly
  • headache
  • vertigo
  • nausea
  • indigestion
  • dry mouth
  • shortness of breath
  • frequent urination
  • urinary urgency

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Common Causes of Mental Disorders

The following are the most common causes of Mental Disorders:
  • genetic factors
  • environmental factors
  • neurological conditions or injury
  • physiological factors
  • biological factors
  • psychological factors
  • history of child abuse
  • family history of mental disorders
  • major depressive disorder
  • personality disorder

Other Causes of Mental Disorders

The following are the less common causes of Mental Disorders:
  • personality
  • non-psychiatric illnesses
  • psychiatric syndromes

Risk Factors for Mental Disorders

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Mental Disorders:
  • having a first-degree relative
  • periods of high stress
  • alcohol or drug abuse
  • personal or family history of depression
  • major life changes
  • trauma
  • stress
  • certain physical illnesses and medications

Prevention of Mental Disorders

Yes, it may be possible to prevent Mental Disorders. Prevention may be possible by doing the following:
  • identification and motivation of the risk participants

Occurrence of Mental Disorders

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Mental Disorders cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Very common > 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Mental Disorders can occur at any age.

Common Gender

Mental Disorders can occur in any gender.

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Mental Disorders

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Mental Disorders:
  • ICD-10 criteria: To diagnose bipolar disorder
  • Physical examination: To check the signs and symptoms of depression
  • Lab tests: To measure complete blood count and the functioning of thyroid
  • DSM-5 criteria: To diagnose mental problems or conditions
  • GAD-7 screening: Psychiatrist evaluates the person by asking him 7 different questions and classifies the disease accordingly on the basis score obtained

Doctor for Diagnosis of Mental Disorders

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Mental Disorders:
  • Psychiatrist
  • Psychologist

Complications of Mental Disorders if untreated

Yes, Mental Disorders causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Mental Disorders is left untreated:
  • problems related to alcohol or drug use
  • suicide or suicide attempts
  • poor work or school performance
  • excess weight or obesity
  • pain and physical illness
  • anxiety
  • panic disorder
  • social phobia
  • family conflicts
  • relationship difficulties
  • social isolation
  • suicidal feelings
  • suicide attempts
  • self-mutilation
  • can be fatal
  • neuropsychiatric disorders

Procedures for Treatment of Mental Disorders

The following procedures are used to treat Mental Disorders:
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy: Identify and replace unhealthy, negative behaviors and beliefs
  • Interpersonal and social rhythm therapy: Stabilization of daily rhythms such as mealtimes, waking and sleeping
  • Family-focused therapy: Family support and communication help to recognize and manage signs of mood swings

Medicines for Mental Disorders

Below is the list of medicines used for Mental Disorders:

Self-care for Mental Disorders

The following self-care actions or lifestyle changes may help in the treatment or management of Mental Disorders:
  • Quit drinking or using recreational drugs: Avoid alcohol or drug abuse
  • Make a healthy routine: A regular and a healthy routine for eating, physical activity and sleeping can help balance your mood
  • Consider keeping a mood chart: Keep a record of your daily moods, sleep, treatments and activities
  • Quit smoking and coffee: Both nicotine and caffeine worsens the condition of anxiety
  • Use relaxation techniques : Eases the anxiety
  • Take proper sleep: Enough sleep can help to reduce the anxiety
  • Eat healthy food: Vegetables, fruits, whole grains and fish can help to reduce the anxiety

Alternative Medicine for Treatment of Mental Disorders

The following alternate medicine and therapies are known to help in the treatment or management of Mental Disorders:
  • Intake passionflower supplements: Helps to reduces the anxiety

Patient Support for Treatment of Mental Disorders

The following actions may help Mental Disorders patients:
  • Learn about bipolar disorder: Get proper education about your condition and its treatment options
  • Stay focused on your goals: Stay motivated to manage bipolar disorder
  • Join a support group: Connect to others people with same conditions and share experience

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Mental Disorders.
Bipolar Disorder
Child Mental Health
Compulsive Gambling
Eating Disorders
Mental Health
Mood Disorders
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Panic Disorder
Personality Disorders
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Psychotic Disorders
Teen Mental Health

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