“Agios Charalambos” Mental Health Clinic (AX Clinic) has many years of experience and expertise in the treatment of mental disorders, in a protected and safe environment. After diagnosing a mental illness, emotions are mixed. For some people, diagnosis brings relief as they finally give a at a problem. For others, it can be more difficult. With the intensive monitoring and care of our Clinic to you or your loved ones you can regain hope and achieve your life-goals.
Identifying a Mental Disorder
Recognizing the warning signs of a mental disorder and the ways to deal with it
Most people believe that mental disorders are something rare and that they only “happen to someone else”. The truth is that mental disorders are very common.
Most families have difficulty accepting that a beloved one has a mental disorder. The attempt to understand mental illness is often physically and emotionally debilitating, and at the same time it leaves us vulnerable to others’ opinions and criticism. If you think that someone close to you – or even you – suffers from mental problems, it is important to remember that where there’s help, there’s also hope.
What is a mental illness?
Mental illnesses are brain based conditions that affect thinking, emotions and behavior. Since we all have a brain, facing mental health problems during our lives is actually very common.
Having a mental illness means that the brain changes in such a way that patients are often not able to think, feel or act in the ways they normally would. For some people, this translates to extreme and unexpected mood changes, while for others, thinking is unclear, communication becomes difficult and strange, unexplainable emotions emerge.
There are many different types of mental illnesses. Some of the most common illnesses are depression, bipolar disorder, dementia, schizophrenia and anxiety disorders. Symptoms include mood, personality and social behavior changes.
Mental health problems may be related to excessive anxiety caused by a particular situation or series of events. As with cancer, diabetes and heart disease, mental illnesses have often physical, emotional and psychological impact. Mental illnesses can be emerged as a reaction to social pressures, genetic factors, biochemical imbalances or a combination of all these. With proper care and treatment, many people learn to face mental illness or even recover.
Warning Signs and Symptoms
Here you will find some signs that can warn you that a loved one may want or should refer to a mental health professional. The following symptoms should not be related to a recent use of substances or other medical condition. If you or someone you know is in crisis, ask for help immediately. Call at 2810 232401 24/7 or call 166 for immediate help.
Symptoms in adults, young adults and adolescents:
- Tangled thought
- Prolonged grief or irritability
- Extreme emotions
- Excessive fears, worries and anxiety
- Social withdrawal
- Dramatic changes in eating or sleeping habits
- Strong emotions of anger
- Strange thoughts
- Illusions (altered perception of stimuli)
- Extreme difficulty to deal with daily problems
- Reduced functionality in everyday activities
- Suicidal thoughts
- Many unexplained physical symptoms and conditions
- Use of substances.
Symptoms in elderly:
- Inability to deal with problems and daily activities
- Changes in eating or sleeping habits
- Excessive complaints for physical conditions
- Changes to the ability to manage household responsibilities
- Theft and / or vandalism
- Intense Fear
- Prolonged negative mood, often accompanied by poor appetite or death thoughts
- Frequent outbursts
- Reduced sensibility
- Persistent nightmares
- Persistent aggression
- Use of substances
How to deal with a mental disease in everyday life
Accept your feelings
Despite the different symptoms and types of mental illnesses, many families of persons with mental illness, share similar experiences. You may find yourself denying the warning signs, worrying about what other people will think due to the stigma or wondering what caused the illness of your loved one. Accept that these emotions are normal and common among families that face similar situations. Learn as much as you can for the state of your loved one by reading and speaking with mental health professionals. Share what you’ve learned with others.
Unusual Behavior Management
External signs of a mental illness are often behavioral. A person can be extremely quiet or withdrawn. On the other hand, they can have a crying or anger outburst or be extremely stressed.
Even after the start of a treatment, some people with mental illness can exhibit antisocial behaviors that can become disturbing and, therefore, difficult to accept. Ask a mental health professional for the better method to deal with such behaviors, listen with an open mind both the person who suffers and the specialist and stay close to your patient, offering your support.
Create a support network
When possible, ask for support from friends and family members. If you believe you cannot discuss your state with friends or other family members, find a self-help or support group. These groups provide you with the opportunity to talk to other people who deal with the same type of problems. They can listen and offer valuable pieces of advice.
Treatment can be beneficial for both the person with mental illness and other family members. A mental health professional can propose ways to deal with a mental issue and better understand your loved one’s condition.
When looking for a therapist, you are advised to talk with a variety of professionals so you can choose the right person for you and your family. It may take a while until you feel comfortable, but in the long run you will be thankful you asked for help.
Find Time to Rest
People with mental illness often become the center of attention in family life. When this occurs, other family members may feel ignored or unhappy. Some may have difficulty pursuing their own goals.
If you are the caregiver, take some time for yourself, in order to avoid frustration or anger. This will eventually grant you with more patience, compassion and strength to deal with your loved one. Being physically and emotionally healthy helps you support others.
Families of a person with a mental illness share similar experiences
It is important to remember that the hope of recovery exists and that, after completing a treatment, many people with mental illness return to a productive and satisfying life.