Being mentally healthy is crucial for having a healthy lifestyle. However, there are a number of reasons why we often forget to take care of our mental health. This could lead to several chronic problems that may disrupt our life.
Stats reveal that 1 out of 4 people will be affected by some sort of mental disorder at some point in their lives. This is all the more reason why you need to start taking care of your mental health. Other than that, here are some signs that will help you understand that it’s time to prioritize your mental health:
1. You don’t enjoy doing the things you loved earlier
One of the biggest and easily recognizable signs of deteriorating mental health is that you no longer have fun doing activities that you used to love. For instance, you may be fond of running but are lately finding it difficult and tiring to even prepare for a run. The official term for such a feeling is anhedonia. It basically means the inability to experience pleasure from activities that were usually found enjoyable.
Now, it can be a one-off feeling on a particularly bad day or week. However, if you feel this way persistently and are unable to force yourself to do things that you used to love, there is surely a need for you to take care of your mental health.
2. You’re feeling sleepy all the time
Being constantly fatigued and sleepy throughout the day is a telltale sign of underlying mental health problems. If you are feeling tired throughout the course of the day, you should try to sleep for at least 7 hours.
After that, if you still feel sleepy when you wake up, it means your mental health is off. Deteriorating mental health leads to the disruption of one’s normal sleep cycle which causes the body and mind to feel tired all the time.
You will either find yourself sleeping a whole lot more than you used to or having trouble sleeping at all. Further, your energy levels will deteriorate quite a lot and you may find it difficult to focus on work. You should keep a track of your sleep cycle and your energy level throughout the day to figure out if your mental health is not in the best condition.
3. You’re becoming forgetful
Several studies conducted by experts have concluded that deteriorating mental health and conditions like depression are linked with a reduced working memory capacity in the person.
If you find that your memory is not as strong as it used to be, you might be suffering from mental health problems. You will tend to forget things easily and take time remembering events of the past- even in the past few days. Your processing speed will also slow down to a great extent as a result of poor mental health.
When you’re showing signs of forgetfulness, it’s important to undergo memory training. In this way, you can practice your short- and long-term memory and watch out for any lapses. Some ways to train your memory are learning a new language and challenging your speech and ability to recall. Memory training games are also available, like word games and puzzles, helping you sharpen your memory and cognitive skills.
Doing the same things can dull not only the body’s performance but also the mind. Hence, new and exciting activities should be introduced to reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. Train and challenge your mind every time to avoid forgetfulness and to improve your memory.
4. You’re experiencing aches
Most people don’t realize this, but mental health issues can have a physical manifestation, in fact, they often do. Some of the most prominent symptoms of mental issues are persistent headaches, gastrointestinal issues, back pains, and neck pains.
You might even experience chronic aches in other parts of your body as a result of it. If you notice this happening, you should take note of it and look for some other symptoms mentioned in this list. If you see that the aches are coupled with another sign, it is highly possible that you have some underlying mental health concerns that need to be addressed immediately.
While your doctor may prescribe pain relievers, like over-the-counter medications, aches or pains psychological in nature are hard to treat. Hence, sourcing the root cause of the ache or pain is crucial in finding out if there’s a physical cause or not. People who frequently complain of unexplained pains or aches should see a mental health expert for proper assessment. Proper referrals to medical practitioners can be carried out for more in-depth diagnosis necessary for pains and aches with a physiological basis.
5. Your appetite is not the same
Changes in appetite are a common sign in people facing mental health problems. You would either find yourself overeating and craving more food all the time or end up not wanting to eat anything at all.
Both of these are serious concerns as they can develop into eating disorders or other serious health conditions. Any change in your appetite should be a cause of concern.
If you don’t want to end up getting overweight or anorexic, make sure not to ignore any changes in your appetite, especially one accompanied by symptoms of depression.
6. You’re staying in more
When your mental health is degrading, you will tend to keep away from friends and family and the people you usually used to spend time around. This is because subconsciously or consciously, you will feel that none of them would understand what you are experiencing and might even think less of you. It will lead you to spend more time by yourself.
If you find yourself avoiding people and staying by yourself most of the time, you should connect with a friend or a family member who you trust. It will help you in getting your [mental health] back on the right path.
Over to you…
To summarize, any feeling that you are experiencing or any activity you are doing that makes you feel unlike your usual self should be a cause of concern as it points to poor mental health. If you notice any of the signs mentioned here, you must immediately contact a professional that offers mental health services and seek help.
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