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Differentiating Mental Illness from Mental Health

When differentiating mental illness from mental health, one must see deeply into something that’s unwritten but what is felt. A medical professional must determine a person’s mental health through the episodes of behavior that the person is manifesting. There are certain categories that fall under the behaviors and thoughts which can be classified as normalcy with the absence of any kind of illness within the system.

Sometimes, the answer is already at the tip of your tongue. If you read carefully, you’ll understand that there is a big different between mental health and mental illness. For one, mental health is the state of mind that doesn’t experience any kind of outbreak of insanity. Whereas mental illness refers to the state of mind that accumulates problems and since the mind and body can no longer cope with the episodes, toxic substances travel to your brain thus making it ill.

Mental illness is the time when a normal person tends to see things and hears things that aren’t really seen or heard by others. Some may show signs of having ideas that he can become the next Julia Roberts without even having the slightest idea on how to act or play the part; this might be caused by a bipolar disorder.

However, having a clear shot on what really is the difference between the two can be pretty thin. There are times when a person becomes afraid or scared to go on stage and face thousands of people just to give a public speech. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the person is having a mental illness but merely the attack of the nerves going into the system. People oftentimes feel depressed or overly exaggerated but that can be considered normal because humans tend to experience mood shifts.

With that, what is really the difference? How can you distinguish one from the other? These can be answered just by looking at what mental health is NOT.

A normal state of mind doesn’t manifest signs and symptoms that doctors usually convey on their patients. Majority of health providers define mental illness or disorder through the signs and symptoms that are shown by their patients namely increased in breathing pattern, agitation, etc. Signs are the things that can be seen by the medical practitioner that the patient is indicating which are usually objective.

While symptoms are those that are felt and is verbalized by the patient which are oftentimes regarded as subjective. Some examples of symptoms are pain, depression, fear, etc. Functional impairments are also considered as a factor that may greatly affect the mental well-being of the person. Impairment of normal functions can be regarded as those daily routine like taking a bath, washing your teeth, etc. These, by far are not what mental health is all about. Why? Because these can greatly affect how a person reacts thus, thinks.

 

Further studies also show that mental illness is ideally uncoordinated and show behaviors that aren’t within the scope of the normal functioning mind. Some of these illnesses show up as:

• Extreme mood swings that happen almost everyday

• Imaginary ideation which is quite impossible like having superhuman abilities

• Intense feelings of sadness and depression

• Responses shown physiologically like diaphoresis or excessive sweating

Mental health is always regarded as the mental state of mind with normal functioning and everyday coping.

MaPomDen.com

MaPomDen.com is Ghana’s Health Hub Spearheaded by Dr. Frank Dartey Amankonah (Dr. Doo), a Medical Doctor with extensive Healthcare experience and WordPress skills, and works for a Mission Hospital in Ghana.His main aim is to bring Health education to all and sundry and make people comfortable to ask their health-related questions freely and a friendly way to understand their conditions.Dr. Frank A Dartey has B.Sc. Human Biology (2009) and MBChB (2012) from the School of Medical Sciences (SMS)- KNUST, Ghana.

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