How to Manage and Control Mental Health

Life throws a myriad of challenges such as illness, losing a loved one, or financial crisis. We all struggle from time to time to time. However, good mental help assists us to bounce back and stay in control. Unfortunately, this may not always be the case. Moving from one disaster to another with no relief in sight, causes a lot of stress and anxiety. Contacting professionals such as Symmetry Counselling Services will allow you to receive the much-needed therapy.

Being in a good mental health state does not necessarily mean the absence of mental diseases such as anxiety disorders, ADHD, or post-traumatic stress. It is characterized by:

  • Capability to feel, express, and manage both positive and negative sentiments
  • Skill to form and maintain worthy relationships
  • Aptitude to cope with and adjust to change and uncertainty.

Additionally, good mental health helps us cultivate healthy relationships as well as maintain physical wellness. We are in a position of making sound choices for both our advantage and others as well.

Img source: Pixabay

Ways to sustain mental health 
While we may still be subject to forces beyond our control, some habits can assist us in maintaining good health, and they include:

 A good diet does more than control weight. Research shows that food high in omega-3 fatty acids can positively affect temperament. Consequently, consuming saturated fats and sugars, including pesticides, additives, and trans-fats in food, can inhibit the brain from functioning productively. Poor eating habits cause an increase in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, and schizophrenia.

What we eat becomes the raw material for our brain that helps produce hormones and neuro-transmitters – chemical elements that control sleep, disposition, and conduct. Vitamin deficiencies sometimes manifest themselves as depression, causing mood swings, apprehension, and distress.

Proper eating practices are vital for patients wanting to cope with medication side effects used to treat mental illnesses. Food selection should go beyond satisfying taste buds but should help elevate brain function. Diet has to balance and should consist of:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Food high in omega 3-fatty acids such as fish, nuts, seeds, and eggs
  • Protein
  • Whole grains

Physical exercise 
The best way to improve mental health is to incorporate physical activity whenever possible. It may be as simple as a 5-minute walk, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or signing up for dance classes.

Mental exercise 
Are you aware that playing games, solving crossword puzzles, and pre-occupying your mind is beneficial for mental wellbeing? Engaging the mind helps eliminate a meltdown and prevent mental health challenges.

Exercise has many psychological benefits. 

  • Physical exercise is continuously a prescription for treatment in mental health due to its progressive influence. 
  • Studies reveal exercise to be as effective as psychotherapy, noting that exercise helps patients feel better and are unlikely to engage in substance abuse or other unproductive activities. 
  • Exercise minimizes anxiety. Many studies have made deductions that people who exercise are less frazzled and jittery. 

Physical exercise is beneficial in a myriad of ways 

  • It can stimulate anti-anxiety effects
  • It helps counteract withdrawal symptoms, inactivity, and bleakness, which are characteristics of depression.
  • Destructive mood swings such as tension, weariness, and anger are positively affected by exercise
  • It enhances self-esteem
  • Exercise encourages socializing and counteracts loneliness.

Recognizing mental health concerns 
Since mental health is not tangible, it poses a huge assignment in recognizing and diagnosing it. Stigma after diagnosis prevents us from seeking help. However, early detection and treatment can lead to successful management. Left untreated, prolonged anxiety and strain related issues lead to ulcers, colitis, or heart disease.

If you have a loved one diagnosed with mental illness, the best you can do is seek medical intervention from recognized practitioners such as Symmetry Counseling Services.

Take control of stress. 
With all the challenges that life throws at us, stress is inevitable, hence, the need to learn coping mechanisms. Stress is referred to as the change we have to accept. Learning to cope with stress can relax the body and mind. Meditation, exercise, and forms of visualization are helpful techniques for reducing the negative impression of stress.

Engaging in a hobby you love, such as listening to soothing music, hiking, sightseeing, and bonding with friends and family are also great ways to mitigate effects brought about by stress.

To some extent, small doses of stress can be beneficial because short, stressful episodes trigger chemicals that improve memory, increase energy levels and enhance alertness and productivity.

However, chronic stress has sapping physical effects such as migraines, ulcers, muscle tension, fatigue, and heart disease.

An extended season of stress affects us both emotionally, physically and intellectually, and can cause

  • Decline in concentration
  • Memory lapses
  • Confusion
  • Lack of sense of humor
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Panic

The relation between stress and mental illness is not fully understood, but it is factual that stress can negatively affect an episode of mental illness.

Img source: Pixabay

Managing stress 
First, recognize or identify the source of your stress. Sit in a quiet place, taking time to re-evaluate yourself to discover why you are edgy and fretful. Draining experiences like a death in the family, starting a new job, or relocating to a new town can be a source of pressure, leading to an emotional meltdown.

It is worth noting that much of the stress emanates from within us. Our elucidation of events, a conversation at the office, a performance review, or an uncomfortable stare determine whether something degenerates and becomes a stress source.

The negative self-talk that focuses on self-reproach or cynical over-analysis can turn an innocent remark into a major stress source. Detecting where your stress emanates from can help you adopt the most appropriate course of action.

Managing external stressors such as grief, loss of employment, or parental challenges is possible with family and friends’ support. Consequently, inward stressors caused by our negative interpretation requires adjustment and re-alignment in attitude and behavior.

Managing stress is directly relates to your ability to relax amid the storms of life. Our bodies undergo a psychological and physiological reassuring process when we perceive the looming danger or stressful episode has passed.

Here are tips for triggering relaxation responses 

  • Learn relaxation techniques – engaging in breathing exercises each day can relieve prolonged stress and re-align your viewpoint more constructively. Proper breathing habits can improve both mental and physical health. 
  • Set realistic goals – re-evaluate the tasks and activities that you need to release or outsource. Refrain from volunteering to do everything, everywhere, and learn to say no without feeling guilty. Only engage in activities that are beneficial.
  • Exercise – purposing to engage in some form of exercise no matter how minimal is good. Make exercise a habit and not an option. 
  • Visualization – envisage yourself overcoming your challenges. 
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle – a good diet is the first culprit in bouts of stress. Therefore, make an effort to cook proper meals no matter how bad you feel. 
  • Talk about it – sharing is caring, and a problem shared is half solved. Telling a trusted friend may help you put things in perspective. Additionally, you will discover you are not alone, and others have gone through similar challenges and triumphed.