Let me tell you a story about Kit, a 44-year-old man who went to my office three months ago, asking if he should end his life to avoid facing his issues.
The Background Story
Ten years ago, Kit had it all – a business, a home, and a family. He opened a restaurant when his firstborn – a beautiful baby girl – was born. Though his house was still on the mortgage, paying it every month was not a problem for him.
Kit mentioned that his life at that point was completely different from what he had 15 years ago. That’s when he got diagnosed with sexual addiction – soon after a police raid took place at a shady club, which was a front for prostitution in his city. He struggled with his addiction until he met his wife, Lara, who helped him overcome his problems.
The thing was, Kit’s wife was far from being a saint-like person. In truth, she had always wanted to live a lavish life and buy all the bags and shoes she could find. While Kit was busy making money, she was busy spending it. It came to the point that Kit had to declare bankruptcy after a fire occurred in the restaurant, and he found out that they no longer had money to start again.
Despite that, the man did not get mad at Lara. The two of them look for jobs, and they tried to make it work like other middle-class families. Kit figured that that would be enough for them to open a business once more if they kept at it for a few months.
What Kit did not expect, though, was that Lara had other plans for herself. She had been having an affair with her childhood friend, who also happened to be their second daughter’s godfather. The revelation broke Kit’s heart into a billion pieces, and he secured a court order that would keep his wife from seeing their two daughters.
The Start Of Even Bigger Problems
Since Kit soon realized that he could not work and raise two kids alone, he sent his daughters off to his parents’ farm in Idaho. Lara kept trying to change the court’s ruling, but none of them thought of divorcing once and for all.
Instead, Kit decided to get multiple girlfriends to quench his loneliness. He divulged that he dated five different girls at one time, wanting to feel loved and significant. After some time, he got evicted from the family house that he could no longer pay for and shacked up with one of his girlfriends.
Bella knew that he was not legally separated, but she was cool with it. Still, Kit did not want them to go public in fear of Lara getting wind of it and filing an adultery case against him, which can make her take their kids. But his ulterior motive for hiding his relationship with Bella was to ensure that he could see other women without Bella finding out.
Boom Goes The News
No secrets could ever remain as much, of course. Bella learned that there were other women in Kit’s life. In retaliation, she stopped taking her birth control pills without his knowledge. He only found out when Bella showed him a positive pregnancy test.
Was Kit happy about it? No. As it turned out, he had no plans of marrying Bella. He lived with her out of convenience, but he fancied other women, too. He urged Bella to terminate her pregnancy because Lara could sue him – and because he could not afford to raise another child – but the defiant girlfriend wanted him to take responsibility for it.
Fast Forward To Present
This was the issue that brought Kit to my office. From what you read, it might become evident to you that Kit stopped thinking with his head the moment his marriage fell apart. It would be safe to assume that he gave in to his loneliness, which allowed sexual addiction to creep back into his life. Once he realized it, though, it was already too late.
“What can I do, ma’am?” Kit asked miserably.
“Technically speaking, abortion is legal here in New York. You can ask your girlfriend to reconsider, and her answer will hopefully be in your favor. However, what you should never do is run away from your problems by killing yourself. Just think of how your kids and parents will feel if you do that.”
When Kit did not reply, I continued, “If you have the means to do so, I would suggest getting a divorce with your legal wife to avoid further problems. And if you genuinely do not want to be with your pregnant girlfriend, do not play with her feelings anymore and offer child support if she wants to keep your baby. More importantly, I would suggest getting therapy so that you can overcome your sexual addiction.”
Kit’s life would forever be changed by his sexual addiction, unfortunately. He went on to get multiple jobs to pay for his ex-girlfriend’s pregnancy, finalize his divorce, and provide for his two daughters. Nevertheless, the silver lining was that he stopped sleeping with as many women as possible, so he could gain some balance in his life.
In the world of therapy, I could say that some professionals still did not want to leave their comfort zones. What I meant was that they would not go past dealing with people with depression, anxiety, or marital problems. Those were common, and they would not need to challenge themselves too much.
But I was never like that. In truth, when my parents offered to help me set up an office in the city, I was like, “Why don’t you help me create a rehab facility for sex addicts instead?”
People would ask me, “Don’t you fear for your safety whenever you accept potential sex addicts in your office?” The short answer is no.
Are those individuals capable of committing sexual offenses? Possibly. Do they experience more uncontrollable sexual urges than other people? Yes, most likely. However, before I let anyone into my office, I ensure that my clients want to change for themselves and the sake of others. That way, it’s effortless to separate them from folks who are not ready to turn their lives around.
Here’s what happens if we don’t help sexual addicts.
They Get Sued For Sexual Misconduct
Pornography is among the common telltale signs that someone has a sexual addiction. They cannot let a day pass without watching it, no matter where they are or how often they can have sex with their partners. While some people may find it disgusting, it happens to be one of the mildest symptoms of this disorder because the others may get you sued for sexual misconduct – or worse.
For one, some addicts could go as far as hiring prostitutes or escorts, and that’s illegal conduct in various states. Others may have sex in public, and that’s not acceptable either. Worse, they might turn into pedophiles or rapists, which are unforgivable in everyone’s eyes.
They Have Multiple Partners
Another issue with sex addicts is that they cannot ever stick to one partner. No matter how gorgeous or successful or giving their partner is, they still cannot fight the urge to cheat and be with other people. If you ask them why, I doubt they can give you a proper answer because they may not know it.
This lifestyle is perhaps acceptable if you are in a polygamous relationship. However, in most cases, a sex addict tends to lead a double life in which they act as a one-woman man or one-man woman. When the crap hits the fan and their partners find out, things can get crazy.
They Deal With Unwanted Pregnancies
When you have multiple partners, it is not impossible for you to deal with unwanted pregnancies one too many times. If you are a man, you may have relationships with women who want to trap you with a bun in the oven. If you are a woman, you may not know who the father of your unborn child is.
Regardless of your gender, though, unwanted pregnancies lead to more flawed life decisions more often than not. To be honest, I cannot decide about what’s worse than abortion or keeping the baby at that point. If you terminate the pregnancy, you are committing a mortal sin, but the unborn child can have another chance of getting born in a family that wants them. If you don’t terminate the pregnancy, the child may feel unwanted while growing up, which can cause a world of hurt for them.
Worst Of All: They Will Continue In A Destructive Path
Learning from past mistakes is not always a thing with sex addicts. It may work for others, but not for them. The reason is that they are more compulsive than others, so they tend to act before they think if it’s right or wrong.
Because of that, staying undiagnosed almost guarantees that people with sexual addiction will continue doing the same things that they should not have even thought of doing in the first place. It won’t end in a happily ever after – mind you. From what I often hear, the world can be more forgiving towards murderers than sexual offenders.
Does wanting to change entail that the process of healing will be easier than usual? In most of my clients’ cases, it makes them more open to ending their habits and becoming conscious of their thoughts and behaviors. But in terms of “ease,” they still need months to break the chain, so it’s not as easy as you may imagine.
Nevertheless, I should stress that the healing journey will never start if you do not allow yourself to get diagnosed with sexual addiction. If you ever wonder if your sexual behaviors are outside the normal realm and worry about dealing with the issues mentioned above, please see a psychologist or psychiatrist who can recommend you to a therapist like me. It will only be challenging initially, especially when you must accept that you have a mental health problem, but doing so will do you good.
Hazards of when an individual whose mental hygiene is a problem gets ignored. As it stresses the integration of the person’s body and mind.
This would eventually lead to deleterious outcomes. And though numerous organizations and people are working to identify what causes us to be affected mentally, there is no clear indication. It is a continuous and challenging process. Consequently, there is no exact reason for this.
Violence is considered part of a severe mental illness, but most individuals who suffer from a mental health disorder usually experience anxiety, depression, or drug addiction.
Another topic of importance in the mental field is hygiene. What’s there to discuss about mental hygiene?
The World Health Organization states that wellness begins with optimal mental hygiene. Optimal mental hygiene provides us with the capacity to efficiently cope with the challenging stressors of living life. If one is healthy, he can maximize his potential, and contribute his skills to the community.
Indeed, various factors result in mental health and mental hygiene decline, namely, long overdue stress, physical conditions, and genetic factors. Social factors also play a major role in one’s mental hygiene.
Keeping Our Psychological Health At Bay
Having to live with a mental illness impacts one’s education, parenting skills, work, and relationships. It is vital to seek the support of professionals, such as mental hygiene therapists and counselors, for one’s mental well-being to be kept at bay.
Being emotionally balanced helpsimprovethequality of your life and provides you with calmness and the capacity to live life optimally. Good mental hygiene, in general, will help you develop healthy relationships, decide wisely, keep your physical hygiene and mental hygiene at bay, and utilize your potential to its maximum.
Understanding Mental Hygiene
Individuals who take care of their mental hygiene and get the support of mental hygiene experts spend a little less on their health. Reduced mental health results in numerous conditions that might increase your number of visits to your doctor. Additionally, when your hygiene is poor, you will certainly be taking more medicines and counseling sessions. However, after getting the appropriate therapy and other treatments, you will presumably become better psychologically, mentally, and emotionally – thus, hygiene – physical and mental – improves.
Optimal hygiene averts slow physical healing and hazardous habits like overeating and smoking. Several studies have revealed proof that for individuals who had proper mental hygiene and the support of a counselor, the number of medical appointments significantly decreased. Furthermore, when you have good hygiene, your energy levels are high. Good hygiene does have several benefits. Good hygiene and mental health yields positive outcomes.
Mental Hygiene Counseling
Mental hygiene counselors help you manage your feelings, offer tools for you to efficiently deal with your stressors healthily, and tackle your mental health illness or trauma that you could be confronted with. Mental hygiene counselors deal with different institutions like offices, hospitals, and schools. They utilize a range of methods that help provide people with effective and sufficient hygiene support.
The American Counseling Association describes counseling as a type of approach that empowers an individual to attain optimal mental hygiene, career, and ultimately the best life ever. Mental hygiene counselors are highly qualified professionals that are determined to help you live a happier and more fruitful life. School counselors help students manage their academic-related issues, along with the other mental worries and stressors that come their way. Career coaches or counselors work with you as you aim to increase your productivity and manage your work-related concerns, such as career-associated identity crises. They are committed to helping you find the most suitable career path and tackle other career-related issues.
Mental hygiene experts play the most significant role by treating those of you who may be suffering from mental health disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Truly, mental hygiene counselors help us become more efficient and productive, and by assisting us in gaining healthy well-being, they, in turn, help us become productive members of society. Refusing to go to a mental health counselor when necessary might lead to considerable undesirable economic and social effects on you and your community.
Perhaps we do not ignore our physical well-being, but we usually neglect the significance of staying emotionally and mentally well. Managing the stressors in our daily life and unpredictably tough situations can definitely take a toll on us. By seeking the help of a mental hygiene professional, we can express how we feel, gain more awareness and be more capable of coping with painful and traumatic experiences healthily and appropriately.
A counselor supports and manages clients who are struggling to tackle their life stressors. However, what many people don’t remember is that, like everybody else, counselors also have stress and burnout in their lives. They have families to take care of, payments to make, and several other concerns that challenge their everyday living. Sometimes, stress is associated with work and often also personal. Regardless of the cause, most of them choose to deal with their issues in their own creative and efficient ways. After all, if they help other people achieve optimal mental health, it is doubly vital for them to care for their own.
There are all kinds of stress, though, and not all of them are bad. But the simple presence of stress in life is inherently self-protective, as it obliges the body to protect itself from damage. Furthermore, it is important to note that too much stress can lead to a number of health issues, including heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes, not to mention the turmoil it can cause on a person’s emotional state. This is why self-care is vital to eliminate stress – for counselors and the rest of us.
Below are some ways counselors, therapists, and other stress specialists care for psychological and mental well-being when they’re stressed.
Look For A Routine That Is Effective For You
Following a regular, dependable routine helps you learn to practice discipline, anticipate what’s next, and manage any stressful challenges headed your way. A seasoned psychologist with six kids confessed that she often feels stressed out, but the habits that she learned to practice have helped her avoid fatigue and stress. Her routine includes a daily exercise regimen, bible reading, and meditation. She also eats food that provides her with good health and energy, and finally, she makes sure that she gets sufficient sleep.
She says that stress makes us feel like we can’t survive a chaotic day, but practicing a routine helps regain her sense of control and organization over her life.
Writing out your feelings is a proven and tested hobby for counselors. Many of them have gone through programs that encouraged them to write to process their experiences as trainees and future counselors. Additionally, counselors frequently recommend journaling to their clients to help them monitor stress and emotional patterns when they strive to find some progress.
Journaling is a common but effective tool that permits anxieties, thoughts, and concerns to become conveyed into words. It helps people gain a better insight into their thoughts, emotions, and aspirations and offers a safe space for tough experiences that need expression.
Detach And Stay Invisible
The current news regarding the pandemic and other devastating events can obviously aggravate depression, anxiety, and stress. Moreover, comparing ourselves to other people might even make us feel more depressed and more stressed. So every day, commit to spending an hour or two to detach yourself completely from your social life, television, gadgets, and other social activities. If it’s difficult or impossible to do, try to be more watchful of how you utilize your phones and how long you’re spending time looking into your social media.
Find Physical Enjoyment
Counselors are using their minds most of the day dealing with clients and their concerns. When they feel like they need a break, some of them give their bodies some relaxation time by doing physical activities that they love, like swimming, dancing, biking, and other things that they love to do. They also meditate and join yoga classes. They attempt to ‘numb’ their minds to relax their brains from the usual battles, making it easier for them to think clearly and focus when they get back to work.
Laugh – It’s Still The Best Medicine
Laughter being the best medicine has been a very common notion that has been passed on for years. Though it seems cliché, the statement has been proven true too many times to be ignored. Studies have shown that there are several psychological and mental effects of laughter, including a decrease in stress levels and an increase in the happy hormone dopamine. Being able to laugh at our own mistakes and ourselves makes us feel more carefree and helps puts things in better perspective.
Counselors Need Some Counseling Too
If you think counselors don’t require a few counseling sessions for themselves, then think again! Counselors not going to counseling is one of the many misconceptions about the profession because counselors do not go to counseling. It’s absolutely wrong, as many counselors have claimed that they see a fellow mental health professional twice weekly to handle the stresses in their life and be more efficient in performing their jobs. They believe that they become better at what they do by being a patient, instilling empathy and compassion.
By caring for their own mental well-being, counselors feel more in line with their patient’s concerns and needs, and they can get out of the world and do the best counseling job possible.
Psychologists are an essential part of the healthcare team. They provide therapy sessions and counseling to individuals who need help in their mental health or other day-to-day inconveniences.
Through a technique that usually hastens talk therapy, they can give interprofessional care to professionals or patients in a hospital, business firm, or office they work for.
Psychologists must not be confused with Psychiatrists. Because despite their fair share of help in managing mental health problems, they differ in a lot of ways.
In terms of educational background, a psychiatrist requires a Doctor of Medicine title to practice. Meanwhile, psychologists may work with either a Masters’ Degree or a Doctor of Philosophy. Both, however, require enough training before practicing as a professional.
Psychologists usually aid case-to-case and short-term duration therapies to patients and are not permitted to give them prescriptions. Meanwhile, psychiatrists recommend medication in cases that are typically long-term and require more biological and medical interpretation.
Hiring just a regular Psychologist to treat mental or emotional difficulties is sometimes not enough. Many of these professionals can have therapy styles that are not fit for everyone. They might even have a manner that can be against our will and lifestyle.
So, what you must do is to peer away from the conventional path and find a psychologist that suits your preferences.
You can try to find one on your own through the help of various search engines. You can type “Psychologists near me” or “Psychologist + your location or present address” as a template. Hopefully, this method can help you find the Psychologist fit for you.
If you want to know more about Psychologists, who they are, and how to find one near you, you can check out these interesting FAQs written below:
How do I find the best psychologist?
There are various ways to find the best psychologist. First, you can ask for recommendations from your family and friends. You’re in the same circle. So, there is a higher possibility they’ll be honest with their referrals.
Another option is to check for online reviews. Some sites allow patients to post their feedback regarding their psychologist. You may get insights based on experience. This will surely be helpful in your decision-making.
Is it better to see a psychiatrist or psychologist?
It depends. Both had the proper training to practice psychotherapy. However, they have different approaches. A psychologist focuses more on behavior. They guide you to pinpoint sleep and eating patterns.
They determine sources of negative thoughts. Psychiatrists look more closely at biology and neurochemistry.
What is the difference between a therapist and a psychologist?
Psychologists house a degree in psychology. Their primary responsibility is to diagnose clients. They may determine the best treatment.
A therapist is an umbrella term for various professions. It includes social workers in different counseling areas. Their role is to provide support and guidance; they cannot give a diagnosis.
What are the 3 types of therapy?
The three types of therapy are psychodynamic therapy, behavioral therapy, and humanistic therapy.
Psychodynamic therapy focuses on talking for the patient. It helps uncover thought and behavioral patterns. Such patterns may contribute to their mental health problems.
Behavioral therapy digs the past. They identify happenings in the past contributing to the condition. The most prevalent behavioral therapy is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).
Humanistic therapy enables you to look at a broader perspective. It incorporates worldviews into how you make choices.
What is the best type of therapy for anxiety?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is the most effective therapy. It is usually for addressing anxiety disorders. Research shows it is the best approach to treating social anxiety disorder, phobia, and panic disorder.
CBT allows the patient to examine his or her behavior. It assists in determining negative patterns. It also identifies distortions triggering anxiety.
Which psychotherapy is most effective?
The most effective psychotherapy approach depends on your needs. You may be looking for a technique that will address your anxiety. If so, try cognitive behavioral therapy. This process assists patients in recognizing harmful behavior and thinking.
On the other hand, interpersonal therapy is the best for depression. It focuses more on altering and reframing unhealthy personal relationships.
Lastly, psychodynamic therapy is perfect for childhood trauma. This therapy guides clients especially so in resolving internal psychological conflicts.
What are the four types of psychotherapy?
The four types of psychotherapy are psychodynamic therapy, behavioral therapy, cognitive therapy, and humanistic therapy.
Psychodynamic therapy analyzes the personal impact of various significant events on the client’s choices and feelings. It includes the death of a loved one, childhood trauma, or failed marriage.
Behavior therapy explores the different reasons behind the normal and abnormal actions of a person. Cognitive therapy focuses on the cognition. Mainly what an individual thinks.
This is instead of studying what they do. Humanistic therapy understands a person’s capacity to create rational choices.
What are the 4 types of talk therapy?
The first type of talk therapy is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Its goal is to uncover your thought process. Interpersonal therapy addresses the depression cycle. It ensures that it won’t affect your current and future relationships.
Another type of talk therapy is counseling. Its primary aim is to come up with ways that will deal with your daily issues.
The last type is the Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). Here, they use specific eye prompts and movements. This is to reframe bad memories and intrusive thoughts.
Does psychotherapy really work?
Researches revealed that psychotherapy is effective. It is a technique to improve symptoms of mental illness. Such revolves around thoughts, feelings, relationships, and experiences. It explores the science behind these.
However, experts recommend combining psychotherapy with medication. This is for more effective results.
What are the 3 benefits of all forms of therapy?
One benefit of therapy is you get to deal with anxiety or depression. Therapy helps you explore these mental health illnesses. It assists in finding the best approach to overcome these. It helps cope with significant life transitions. Such includes a broken family.
It may also be transferred to another country. In the worst case, it may be a close family or friend’s death. Lastly, it also helps you manage your addiction or substance abuse.
How long should psychotherapy last?
It depends on your goal. You came to therapy to consult a particular problem. Then, about three sessions might be enough. You may also be experiencing deeper mental health concerns.
Therefore, you might need at least six months for this. Some even last for years.
Does psychotherapy work for anxiety?
Psychotherapy is perfect for individuals with anxiety. This form of therapy helps patients identify the factors contributing to their anxiety. It helps pinpoint harmful behavior and thought patterns. Once they find out what these are, therapists assist on how to manage them.
What should I not tell a psychiatrist?
You may tell your psychiatrist anything. Openness is the key to successful therapy. If you’re leaving white spaces, they won’t see the entire picture. It then may lead to a wrong diagnosis.
Does CBD help anxiety?
CBD helps overcome anxiety. It activates serotonin receptors. These are part of the serotonin system that alleviates anxiety. It plays a role in your sleep, mood, behavior, and even digestion. Professionals recommend taking 300 mg to 600 mg to reduce anxiety.
Should I go to a psychiatrist for anxiety?
Yes, it would help if you went to a psychiatrist for anxiety. They are medical professionals with specialized training in diagnosing and treating all forms of mental illnesses.
What should you tell your first visit to a therapist?
Your first visit to a therapist is an integral step to your recovery. Through this, you will establish your connection with them.
Let them know why you are seeking their services. This way, they’ll understand and develop a tailored plan to help you. Please give them a brief background of your medical history as well.
Psychologists play an integral role in healthcare. You might not see most of them in the frontline, serving outpatients with emergent help like nurses and doctors.
But what you don’t know is that they become a sense of security for individuals struggling with their mental and emotional wars, all while serving behind the counter.
But choosing a random one is not enough. To have a more successful treatment, find a psychologist who is open to your terms and is professional and ethical in work.
Also, make sure to choose a therapist who can give you the best advice and therapy. See a psychologist you feel comfortable with, as it helps with the recovery process.
The service of a psychologist is not only for those fighting their mental or emotional disorders.
A psychologist can provide us with new perspectives and help us find a credible solution to our problems. Take note, however, that therapy sessions will only be effective if you instill honesty and cooperation with your therapist.
Moments of silence took my family by surprise when the doctor told us that I am dealing with a severe mental health condition. Honestly, I know I have not been myself lately and that I am feeling a little weird all the time, but I was not expecting the doctor to say that I am now in a severe state. Well, maybe, at the back of my mind, I know I am. But it seems too hard to hear the truth.
I was diagnosed with clinical depression. “The signs and symptoms were there,” the doctor said. I was confused as to what specific signs and symptoms he was referring to. Did he assume it because my family told him that I kept locking myself in my room all day? But what if I only want a space for myself and I don’t feel like seeing anyone’s face? He did mention that my sudden behavior change is also a factor. Was he referring to my obvious breakdown? Was it because I feel like I was stuck with sadness and loneliness all the time? Honestly, I have no idea what the doctor was talking about and how he comes up with the diagnosis.
Since I was too confused, I tried asking questions sarcastically. Not that I wanted to insult the medical professional, but I feel like I need to retaliate. That is where he said, “you have a psychological problem. You are too caught up with the emotional state that you got depressed.” I paused for a while then things started sinking in. There’s too much emotional pain that I can’t handle. There’s rejection, disappointments, heartbreak, trust issues, bullying, self-image expectations, grief, and many in-betweens that are dragging me down to isolation.
After a couple of minutes of silence, I asked him again, “what’s your basis?” That is where he explained to me the DSM-5 or the structure of mental health.
What is the DSM-5 definition of depression?
The DSM-5 definition of depression relates to the individual’s experience of five or more symptoms of the mental health problem during the same 2-week period. It includes how the person feels, thinks, and behaves. At least the symptoms present are either loss of interest or pleasure of the things that once enjoyed. Or there is a depressed unregulated mood nearly every day.
That information made me feel a little relieved but sad at the same time. I always thought it was all part of my choice not to engage with people or the things I once liked. I was still not convinced with this, but I am somehow getting to understand my mental state.
What are the four types of depression?
The four common types of depression that people know are Major Depression, Postpartum Depression, Psychotic Depression, and Situational Depression.
I got the major one.
What is the difference between DSM IV and DSM 5?
DSM-IV is an organization and psychiatric assessment of biopsychosocial information using a multi-axial formulation such as Clinical Syndromes, General Medical Conditions, Personality Disorders, and Mental Retardation, Psychosocial and Environmental Problems and Global Assessment of Functioning. An example is that patients only need to experience at least one symptom to be diagnosed with substance abuse to be included in the list. Meanwhile, in the DSM-5, patients must have two or more symptoms diagnosed with substance use disorder.
I guess, in my case, I’ve got two.
What are the DSM 5 criteria for bipolar disorder?
In the DSM 5 criteria for bipolar disorder, a person should fall into the category of experiencing at least one episode of mania or hypomania. The consideration of mania includes the expansive, elevated, or irritable mood that usually lasts for at least one week and is uncontrollable and present during most of the day and goes nearly every day. During a manic episode, patients experience a little need for sleep, grandiosity, an inflated sense of self, talking loudly and rapidly, and feeling pressured to speak.
That is quite convincing because all those specific symptoms mentioned were present when I am not in myself. Perhaps the doctor is right about my health issue from the very beginning then.
What are the five DSM categories?
DSM-5 is organized in sequence within individual diagnostic categories that can potentially become a developmental lifetime issue. It includes disorders typically diagnosed in childhood, adolescent stage, adulthood, and later life.The five DSM categories include Axis 1 with Clinical Syndromes, Axis 2 with Personality Disorders and Mental Retardation, Axis 3 with General Medical Conditions, Axis 4 with Psychosocial and Environmental Problems Axis 5 with Global Assessment of Functioning.
How do I know if I’m bipolar?
You might know if you had Bipolar disorder when you experienced extreme changes in your mood. Usually, it goes from high to low and from low to high. Highs refer to moods under mania stages, while lows are moods under the limelight of depression. In some instances, the changes in your mood may even become mixed. Therefore, you might also feel ecstatic and depressed at the same time.
What happens in the brain during the struggle of depression?
Depression contributes to the negative result of having too little serotonin but too much cortisol in the brain. The influx of triggered increased cortisol levels causes the amygdala or the brain associated with emotional responses to enlarge. So when it becomes larger and more active, it causes hormonal imbalance, changes in activity levels, and sleep disturbances. Overall, depression can entirely change a person’s ability to think, react, and behave. It impairs attention and memory and contributes to the difficulty of information processing and decision-making skills.
Is depression classified as a disability?
Yes. Under the ADA or Americans with Disabilities Act, depression is considered a psychiatric disability. It’s a considerable mood disorder that is known to interfere with people’s daily life activities. These include their ability to work, go to school, manage and care for themselves, and socialize with others. In some unfortunate cases, depression sometimes becomes so severe that individuals can no longer find their purpose in life.
Is DSM IV still used?
DSM is now in its 5th edition. But the Fourth Edition or DSM-IV is the official manual of the APA or American Psychiatric Association. Its purpose is to present a structure for categorizing disorders and defining the diagnostic standard for the disorders listed.
What is Axis V in mental health?
Axis V in mental health refers to assessing overall functioning, known as the GAF (Global Assessment of Functioning). These include psychological, social, and occupational functioning. Typically, the scale is used to rate how serious a mental illness could be and how much individuals affect their day-to-day life on a scale of 0 to 100.
Why is DSM 5 criticized?
DSM 5 is often criticized due to main interrelated reasons. One is an unhealthy influence of the drugs or pharmaceutical industry on the amendment process. It has something to do with an increasing tendency to medicalize patterns of mood and behavior that are not considered to be, for the most part, extreme or not debilitating at all. Another issue is the validity and reliability needed for productive use of diagnostic categories despite a compromised utility to clinicians.
What are the four types of bipolar?
The four categories of bipolar, according to the American Psychiatric Association (APA), include bipolar I disorder, which involves times of difficult mood episodes from mania to depression. Then bipolar II disorder or the milder form of mood dysfunction, which involves milder events of hypomania. Then there is a cyclothymic disorder with emotional ups and downs and bipolar disorder due to another medical or substance abuse disorder.
Can bipolar people tell they are bipolar?
Honestly, no. Usually, individuals with bipolar disorder do not know they have it and don’t realize its existence. They are unaware of their condition, even if they are in the manic phase. In some instances, other people with bipolar disorder have more severe and frequent episodes than others, which can be very difficult to determine. Thus, after the manic episode is over, people often feel shocked about their unwanted behavior.
Is Bipolar 1 or 2 worse?
Bipolar I disorder is the most critical form of the condition because it involves severe mood dysfunctions from mania to depression. On the other hand, Bipolar II disorder is a milder form of mood elevation accompanied by occasional hypomanic episodes. But even though Hypomanic episodes are milder than manic episodes, they can still cause emotional, mental, and physical malfunctions.
What are DSM 5 V codes?
V codes (DSM-5) codes include relational problems, housing, economic problems, educational and occupational problems, crime and legal systems, and social environment. It also involves other health service encounters, circumstances of personal and another psychosocial, personal, and environmental history.
I guess I am more inclined to know a lot about mental health now that I am experiencing one. Honestly, it is not that easy to accept it, but I know I can get over this in denial feeling eventually. Because once I finally understand all the necessary information about this severe depression I have, I might be able to push myself towards a healthy recovery.
What is a borderline personality disorder and what is the best therapy for it? The Disorder is something that can affect all aspects and areas of your life. It changes the way you think, act, and function. Awareness about various mental health conditions is growing by the day.
Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a condition characterized by intense mood swings and impulsive behavior. Although similar to depression and other behavioral issues, BPD is different. Individuals who may have borderline personality disorder may engage in risky and destructive behavior.
Shedding light on these problems provides insight into handling and overcoming them.
People diagnosed with the disorder are prone to self-harm. Substance abuse, bodily harm, or even binge eating are common manifestations as well as sudden bursts of emotions such as intense anger and sadness.
Left untreated, the mental illness can be debilitating and negatively impact life. Relationship problems are common due to over-dependency and the development of toxic behavior.
Some cases even show paranoia caused by fluctuating moods. Overall, The condition can be destructive and harmful to patients and the people around them.
Despite these effects, the disorder can get effective treatment through a specialized combination of medication and psychotherapy. Treatments for borderline personality disorder focus on understanding the condition and reducing impulsive actions.
Therapy is impactful in allowing patients to manage their emotions. People with BPD can live happy and meaningful lives with the help of these guided treatment plans.
Are you seeking help for yourself or a loved one with BPD? Here are the frequently asked questions about therapy that might help.
What is the best therapy for a borderline personality disorder?
Dialectical behavioral therapy is the most common type of treatment to address BPD. It is a cognitive behavioral therapy aiming to teach patients how to regulate emotions and tolerate stress.
This type of treatment applies to individual and group therapy. In group dialectical behavioral therapy, you will undergo meditation, muscle relaxation, problem-solving, and breath training.
Can the condition be treated successfully?
A borderline personality disorder is often ingrained in a person’s personality and identity, but therapy and medication can successfully treat it. Medication controls the symptoms, while psychotherapy addresses the root causes of BPD.
Through cognitive-behavioral therapies such as dialectical and schema-focused therapy, you will learn how to react healthily to your thoughts and emotions. Psychodynamic therapy is also helpful in changing unhealthy patterns of behavior developed in early childhood.
How long is the treatment for a borderline personality disorder?
Psychotherapy spans 1 to 3 years for the successful treatment of BPD. This condition requires a lot of work, as it deals with the interior workings of your brain. It may take a long time to manage, monitor, and reduce borderline personality disorder symptoms, but it is possible to treat them.
What triggers a person with Borderline Personality Disorder?
Feelings or situations of rejection and abandonment trigger borderline personality disorder. These situations may arise from relationship issues or random memories of child abuse.
When exposed to conditions evoking these feelings, they tend to feel intense fear and anger. These reactions then lead to impulsive actions, self-harm, and suicide ideations.
Can a person with Borderline Personality Disorder love?
A person with a borderline personality disorder is caring and affectionate. However, they can sometimes give too much or too little, making their love unhealthy or toxic at times.
Being in a relationship can be dysfunctional for them at times. But with sufficient psychotherapy, they will learn to control feelings and actions and thus adapt how to love healthily.
What is the best mood stabilizer for a person with BPD?
Lithium carbonate and anticonvulsant medications prove useful in controlling mood swings and impulsivity.
Anticonvulsants tested for borderline personality disorder include Lamotrigine, Carbamazepine, and Oxcarbazepine. But remember, mood stabilizers, however compelling, should be taken alongside psychotherapy treatments.
Can someone with BPD ever be happy?
People with borderline personality disorder feel emotions at high intensities, so yes, they can be overly happy. As for being truly happy and content, people with the illness can learn how to regulate their emotions and actions healthily through therapy.
How can you tell if someone has a borderline personality disorder?
There are nine distinct symptoms found in most BPD patients. BPD patients fear abandonment and rejection, intense feelings of anger, and emotional mood swings. As a result, they also have a history of unstable relationships.
Chronic feelings of emptiness, self-destructive and impulsive actions, and self-harm are also symptoms that borderline personality disorder patients exhibit. They also have a vague sense of self and can thus be out of touch with reality and even paranoid.
If you have these symptoms, immediately seek the help of a medical professional.
What is a high functioning borderline personality disorder?
High functioning borderline personality disorder or quiet BPD is when a patient manifests symptoms inwardly. High functioning borderlines tend to hide their mood swings, which can last from a few hours to a span of days.
People with high functioning BPD can also take things personally and get upset, to the point of cutting off people. They may also have low self-esteem and often feel numbness, guilt, and emptiness. High functioning BPD even goes to great lengths to please people and feel worthy.
Are borderlines intelligent?
Borderlines are often associated with being hyper-emphatic and are thus intelligent in an emotional and mental sense. They are highly perceptive of other people’s emotions and intuitive when it comes to difficult situations.
They have interpersonal intelligence, which makes them aware of other people’s feelings.
Are people with BPD aware of their behavior?
Borderlines tend to focus on other people to avoid feelings of rejection. However, studies have shown how people with borderline personality disorder were more self-aware than healthy people. Self-awareness can lead to more self-shame and guilt, resulting in an endless cycle of unhealthy coping mechanisms.
How do borderlines think?
Borderlines think in extremes. They can often gloss over complex situations and only see cases as being entirely good or completely bad. Borderlines may also be paranoid sometimes and think of scenarios wherein they may get abandoned, leading to impulsive behavior.
What is quiet borderline?
Quiet borderline is also called the high-functioning borderline. Having a quiet borderline may make it harder for therapists to diagnose your condition because of its inward effect. The symptoms are the same with BPD but are sometimes self-inflicted and bottled up.
Thus, a quiet borderline can seem well on the outside while experiencing borderline personality disorder symptoms in their mind.
How can you tell if a woman has a borderline personality?
Borderline personality disorder symptoms for men and women are almost the same and can thus be used to identify borderlines. Here are the nine characteristics of borderlines:
Fear of rejection and abandonment
A fragile sense of self
Feelings of emptiness
Wild mood swings
Intense and irrational anger
Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is seen by many as something scary or dangerous. It is usually caused by severe stress and may even run in the family. Even with the risky and impulsive behavior, it comes with BPD. Symptoms can be managed and controlled.
When symptoms of BPD are spotted, it is critical to seek professional help. Although there are gaps in our current knowledge about BPD, psychologists and therapists can help patients with this condition.
It is crucial to acknowledge this problem as early as possible to reduce harmful behaviors brought by the condition.
The outlook for people with BPD is generally favorable. Therapy, medication, and most importantly, lots of time are essential to the process. Still, it will be worth it.
You may encounter standard methods such as dialectic behavioral therapy that can help reframe the way you think and act in your life.
Finding the right mental health partner, whether a mental health professional or therapist, is vital to your journey in controlling your condition. Continuous treatment for BPD will diminish its hold on your life.
Final Thoughts And Takeaways To Consider
Over time, people with BPD can form long-term relationships and have healthy expressions of emotions.
Pushing through the whole treatment process may be a difficult path, but things will get better. It is important to get treatment. However, keep in mind to communicate with your therapist about this. Plans are only effective when they are personalized and suit your needs.
I met James when he had nothing but hopes and dreams for the future. He was a struggling screenwriter, you see. He had a script that he could turn into a movie, but production companies already turned him down. Despite my family’s disapproval, I fell for his charms and agreed to move to New York with him and leave my life in Indiana behind so that James could pursue his dreams. I believed in his talent, and I loved him, so I could not see what’s wrong with my decision.
In the Big Apple, we had to get the smallest apartment in a shady side of the town so that we could afford living there for six months – that’s only how long our combined savings would let us. Although it was honestly the size of my bedroom back home, James didn’t hear me complain at all. In fairness to him, he knew that I was not super comfortable in the cramped space, so he said, “Give me six months to find producers for my script, and then we will move to a much nicer apartment.”
I naturally hung on to James’ every word and tried looking for jobs, which I never needed because my parents provided everything for me back home. I got accepted as a waitress at a local diner and sometimes subbed as a delivery girl. On the other hand, James focused on looking for movie producers, so he could not chip in for all additional expenses. Still, I told myself that I was making an incredible investment by putting my faith in him and supporting him in more ways than one.
It didn’t take more than four months before the producers contacted James, asking if his script was still available. They saw it in the no-no pile of another producer, but they thought it was great after reading it, so they went on to find my man.
When I came back to our tiny apartment that evening, I was slightly confused when I saw all our belongings already packed. Then, I found James sitting in the corner and worried if the landlord kicked us out. As soon as I dropped on the floor next to him, though, he hugged me tight and told me the good news. We screamed and cried together; I was so happy that he was finally achieving his dreams, and I got to be a part of it. As for our stuff, the production company gave him a bonus that day, so he got a new – bigger – apartment near Broadway.
The Start Of A Toxic Relationship
It was fun to be the life partner of a rising screenwriter. James got invited to all these fancy parties, and I was always his plus one. While he was getting interviewed, I was waiting for him in the sidelines, smiling from ear to ear. I was proud of James; there was no denying it.
But the more he rose to fame, the less we got to be together. Gone were those nights when we used to side by the window and talk about our dreams of growing old as a couple. Whenever he came home, James was drunk, or I was already fast asleep. He then agreed to attend other parties, regardless of whether it landed on my birthday or our anniversary. Slowly but surely, we turned more into roommates than lovers.
Then, some common friends said that they saw James going into a strip club several times a week. My instinct was to yell, “Liar!” That was my James they were talking about, after all – the sweet boy I fell in love with in Indiana. However, when I recounted the story to James one night, I saw the shock and guilt on his face. What’s more, there was a stripper that he slept with a couple of times, but he insisted that I was still the only one in his heart.
Ending The Toxic Relationship
That was the last straw for me. I could bear it if he was often drunk or bent over work, but I could never forgive a cheater. I packed the suitcase that I went to New York with, purposely leaving everything James gave me throughout the years. It must have been the right decision because I went to the airport as a chance passenger, and I managed to board the plane two hours later. Before it took off, I called my sister to tell her what happened briefly and that I was on the way back home.
When I landed, I cried hard after seeing that my parents came to pick me up. We hugged each other tightly, not bothering if others found us weird. I kept saying, “I’m sorry,” while my family rubbed my back and said, “It’s okay; you’re home now.”
It took a few days to readjust to my old life without James, but I soon realized how toxic our relationship had been. I spent the last few years trying to help him fulfill his dreams, and he paid me back by neglecting and cheating on me.
Bipolar disorder is officially known as a mental health condition. Individuals with this illness can experience periods of mania or positive behaviors and then negative moods or depression. These mood swings happen abruptly, and almost 3% of adolescents and adults in America have it, as reported by the National Institute of Mental Health. Although the cause of bipolar disorder is generally unclear, studies have shown a possible link between the illness and family history. They further insinuated that there might be a genetic predisposition to it.
Family History And Bipolar Disorder
Up until today, researchers have not discovered concrete causes of bipolar disorder, but they were able to recognize several risk factors, the strongest of which is family history. This may be secondary to specific genes. Adults with family members who were diagnosed with the disorder have ten times increased risk of having the disorder. A 2009 review states that if the family member is a close one, such first or second-degree, your risk is even much higher. Meaning that if one of your parents has the disorder, there is a huge possibility that you will have it compared to someone whose uncle or grandmother has it.
Other Triggers And Factors
A stressful situation often causes the onset of bipolar disorder. This situation might be something that is associated with a person’s personal life or his workplace. An unexpected event, like a tragic accident or the death of a loved one, may also be a trigger to the onset of the disorder. Individuals diagnosed with the illness find it beneficial to manage the stress and other challenges in their lives.
Weather conditions can also trigger episodes of mania or depression for those who have the disorder. The seasonal change from winter to spring, for example, is a solid trigger due to the swift increase in the hours of sunshine during daytime, which has a significant effect on a person’s pineal gland. Other factors that can evoke bipolar symptoms include alcohol or drug abuse and sleeplessness. In some particular circumstances, women with the disorder are triggered just after they have given birth, but this is specific to those who are genetically inclined to having the disorder. This is not to say that pregnancy is among the underlying causes of bipolar illness.
People whose parents are bipolar often wonder if it’s important for them to screened regularly for the illness. Yes, it is not a bad idea at all. But ultimately, it is best to confide in someone that you fully trust, someone from your family perhaps, or a close friend or significant other. Loved ones are usually the first ones who notice the symptoms if you have it, and, of course, they are first in line to help you get medical help if symptoms do occur. If your loved ones tell you honestly that they can’t seem to understand your erratic behavior and you are sometimes ‘not yourself,’ you might consider going to the doctor for consultation.
Structure of the Brain
There have been relevant differences in the brain structure, activity, and size of individuals with bipolar disorder. Additionally, there is also a higher likelihood seen in people who have had traumatic head damage and concussions.
Bipolar Disorder Symptoms
If you or a family member may have bipolar disorder, you must have knowledge of the possible symptoms that you should watch out for. The kind of symptoms that manifest in a person determines the type of bipolar disorder an individual is classified as. The types may be depression or mania, and the symptoms include but are not limited to:
Perceives his abilities rather unrealistically
Exaggerated happiness or in a state of euphoria
Thinks and talks quickly
Excited in getting into risky activities like drunk driving or gambling
Some symptoms of bipolar depression are comparable to those of regular depression, some of which include extreme fatigue, slow speech, poor appetite, long-term feeling of sadness, inability to focus and decide wisely self-isolation, and suicidal ideations.
Bipolar Disorder Treatment
Treatment usually involves behavioral therapy, prescription medications, or a combination of both. Several medications have been shown to treat bipolar disorder effectively, the most potent of which is lithium. It functions to prevent the occurrence of relapses and treats mania and bipolar depression. Other drugs known to be prescribed by doctors to treat the disorder are carbamazepine, topiramate, gabapentin, and lamotrigine, which are all anticonvulsants. As for therapy, the most commonly used for bipolar disorder is cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT. Other treatments found to be effective are omega-3 fatty acid supplementation, electroconvulsive therapy, peer group support, and meditation.
To date, bipolar disorder is not yet fully understood, but the fact that it does run in the family is a known fact that has been backed by evidence. If you know someone from your family who is bipolar, then your likelihood of developing the illness is greater compared to those without a hereditary connection. However, this doesn’t consequently mean that you will definitely have it. If you think you have noticed some symptoms of bipolar disorder in yourself, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor, who is capable enough to provide more information about bipolar disorder and how you can manage it.
It has been impossible to escape updates and news about the spreading of Coronavirus. Everywhere people go, pretty much the situation is the talk of the town. Well, the issue is not just about keeping a social distance or washing off hands frequently. There’s undoubtedly more to that. And while it is incredibly important to stay informed, there are also issues about exaggeration, fear-mongering, misinformation, and sensationalism that individuals had to deal with. In this article, we are going to discuss what it’s like to have the disease in compliance with cold and hard facts. But note, since this pandemic condition is developing rapidly, it is encouraged that people also work with their independent research.
What Is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness where it attacks the lungs’ airways. The disease doesn’t happen automatically, though. If people got infected, it probably would come from another person that is already infected with the virus. The disease is transferred to people due to droplets of saliva or fluid discharge from the nose. Thus, the requirement of wearing a face mask all the time is a top priority. Fortunately, the disease can only cause a mild illness, especially to those people with strong immunity. However, for those individuals with pre-existing medical conditions, the illness can be fatal. Sometimes, it leads to death. Therefore, the disease is extremely dangerous for individuals older than 50.
What Happens When You Get Infected?
Note that signs and symptoms of the disease vary from one person to another. But in typical situations, the first seven to ten days of infection display noticeable symptoms. These include constant coughing, sneezing, fever, headache, and breathing problems. In some unfortunate cases, some infected individuals tend to be asymptomatic. Meaning, even though they were positive with the virus in their body, these people will show no signs throughout the course of their infection. Thus, others will have problems distinguishing them as carriers. In line with this, taking safety precautions becomes exceptionally vital.
Is Being Asymptomatic Okay?
No, of course not. There is at least a significant percentage of asymptomatic people that are positive with COVID-19. And perhaps, they will completely remain that way. Thus, if these individuals fall into this category, they are at the least risk of developing severe symptoms of the virus infection. So they might have a chance not to experience any serious health complications. However, being asymptomatic comes with great danger. These individuals can potentially infect others through a lack of caution. That is why it is essential to understand that even if people think they are not infected with the virus, they should still maintain physical distancing.
What’s The Possible Symptom?
While the grand majority of people with the disease show severe symptoms, a large number of these people will only display a mild cold flu-like virus. If people are lucky enough to fall into this category, it might be because they are healthy and with little to no chronic health conditions. Thus, it is most likely that individuals will only experience a cough and fever. Though it doesn’t feel good, it is a sign that individuals with mild symptoms are more likely to stay away from serious threats or deaths from what they are experiencing. Fortunately, the disease turns into a halt within three weeks from an incubation that lasts five to 10 days.
Once again, if people find themselves having signs of COVID-19, they must immediately contact a health professional. It is also essential that they remain isolated from others to avoid spreading the virus. They must also maintain good hygiene, eat healthy foods, and stay hydrated all the time.