Category: <span>Self-improvement</span>

close up of a couple's hands finger locking

Mental Illness and Relationships

Many people across the United States and beyond have healthy, strong, supportive
relationships, even despite mental illness in one or both partners. While this can sound
somewhat hard to believe, it really comes down to both people being open and honest with the
other about their strengths, weaknesses, and struggles within their relationship. This way people can lean on each other.

The most important thing to know when it comes to mental health and
relationships is taking the steps to learn how to manage mental illness and promote sustainable habits.

Do I Need To Tell Others About My Mental Illness?

It is understandable to see why many people would be hesitant to share with their friends and/
or their significant other that they suffer from any sort of mental illness or disability.

As many probably already know, beginning any relationship or friendship while hiding a piece of
your identity can only lead to an unhealthy relationship and undoubtedly increased secrecy and
poor trust.

This isn’t to say that you have to share any health information on your first date or
upon meeting a new friend, but moreover that when both of you feel the relationship is
progressing into a more of long-term relationship it becomes more important to share this

Close friends and partners will want to support you with your illness, but also
need to be aware should any sort of episode or situation arise.

Mental Illness

How Will My Condition Affect My Relationships?

Mental health and relationships very much go hand in hand as they can have a drastic affect on
each other.

An unhealthy or abusive relationship with a significant other can lead to poor
mental health and even depression, suicide or PTSD. On the other hand, entering into a
healthy, loving relationship when you are already struggling with any sort of mental illness can
turn the relationship sour very quickly. So, how do we strive for both good mental health and
good relationships?

  • Exercise – Maintaining physical health directly relates to your mental health. Exercising
    regularly has shown to improve stress levels, overall mood, as well as anxiety and
    even PTSD.
  • Talk to a Doctor – If you’ve never actually been diagnosed with a mental illness, but you can feel
    yourself changing or acting in a way that feels unusual to you, it can’t hurt to talk to
    a doctor. There are several therapies, medications, and strategies to help you cope
    rather than doing it alone.
  • Counseling or Therapy – Whether or not you have or haven’t been diagnosed with a mental illness, counseling or therapy can always be helpful for both mental and overall emotional
  • Nutrition – Several studies have shown the importance of a well-balanced diet and the major
    effects it can have on your overall health, including mental health. Talking to a
    nutritionist about your specific struggles can really help to maximize your overall

Overall taking care of your mental health is crucial to maintaining successful relationships and
friendships throughout your life.


The Benefits of Exercise for Well-Being

Benefits of Exercise             benefits of exercise

Everyone knows that there are many beneficial physical effects on the body when it comes to exercise. Those that add exercise to their daily routines typically have lower BMI, lower blood pressure, more energy, and a decreased risk of getting diabetes. Not many people think of the psychological effects that exercise has on the body, though! Regular exercise can help to mitigate symptoms of depression and anxiety disorders, along with keeping your memory up to par!

There are five main benefits of exercise when it comes to the psychological impact of exercise on the body. So, next time, choose the stairs over the elevator or your comfortable walking shoes over the short car ride!

Here are a few examples of the benefits of exercise

  1. Increase your self-esteem. When one begins to see more muscle, less fat, and weight loss, self-confidence goes up to an all-time high! Weight loss and shopping for new clothes may not have been your prime goal, and you may even see a change happening before you even realize the cause. 
  2. Give your brain a boost. Regular cardio exercise helps to create new brain cells and improves the overall performance of the brain. In addition to this, it even helps to strengthen the hippocampus, resulting in better memory and less cognitive decline. Creativity and mental energy go through the roof!
  3. Stress Relief. Regular exercise helps to decrease stress levels, making us have a better overall sense of wellbeing. Increasing the heart rate actually helps to reverse stress-induced damage to the brain by hormone stimulation. Mood, cognition, and thinking processes improve.
  4. Sleep better. Regular exercise increases the body’s temperature, which induces a calming effect on the mind. This results in falling asleep quicker, and for longer periods of time. Our “built-in alarm clock” is also regulated, helping us to control when we feel tired versus awake and alert. It is best to exercise throughout the day, and not close to bedtime.
  5. Decrease the effects of depression and anxiety. Exercise definitely improves the mood, which helps to decrease the symptoms that both depression and anxiety have on our mental state. Endorphin levels rise, and feelings of happiness and euphoria are released. Regular exercise may be the key to feeling a bit better!

Exercise has drastic effects on your mental health and overall well being, as well as all of the physical effects that can be seen. While seeing results is important for those with a knack for aesthetics, it is just as important to FEEL the results. Over time, one will feel better overall, both physically and mentally, by incorporating regular exercise into their daily lives.

Substance abuse

Why Outpatient Substance Abuse Programs Are Better

Outpatient Substance Abuse Programs

The mental health of an individual is affected when the habit of substance abuse takes the shape of disease and almost becomes unstoppable for the person affected.

Substance abuse is just one layer of what the person is experiencing. The dependency on the substance can cause one to suffer from Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, and Schizophrenia. They also tend to take more risks, which could eventually lead to major health issues.

Some studies have shown that genetics play a role in how one deals with substance abuse, and if they will suffer from mental illness at the same time. It could also be determined by chemical deficiencies in the brain.

When serotonin is decreased, substance abuse and mental illness seem to go hand and hand.

Additionally, the environment a person is in also plays a huge role, which is why many are quick to think that locking someone in a rehabilitation facility or mental health institution is the best option. Inpatient mental health institutions and rehabilitation facilities work for some people. For others, they begin to feel trapped and abandoned by the family that placed them there.

They begin to see themselves as a burden and don’t understand that the family placed them there out of love for them, trying to keep them safe.

Many times, families don’t know about the positive effects of outpatient services for an individual suffering from substance abuse.

Most institutions have one way, or one program, that is used for everyone. They aren’t typically adjusted based on the needs of the abuser, and pharmaceuticals are often used as part of treatment.

The patient typically can’t leave the facility, which often makes them feel the urge to rebel when they get out. This results in additional hospitalizations and creates a cycle for some that the technique doesn’t work. While those that work in these facilities know the severity of the disease and the need to overcome it, the programs used are more dated and brick and mortar based.

With outpatient services, the patient still has the ability to function in society and go to family gatherings.

While getting the help they need from a professional, they are still getting their emotional needs met by those that support them on a day-to-day basis. This is a recipe for success. Most people that take part in outpatient programs have reduced hospitalizations and higher success rates than those locked in a room for hours at a time in an institution.

Overcoming substance abuse can be one of the hardest challenges a person will face in their lifetime

No matter how hard one tries to stop and how much willpower they have, there will always be a voice in the back of their mind, challenging their decision to be sober.

For this reason, intensive outpatient substance abuse programs are available to help those coping with the everyday battles of staying sober in a therapeutic, calming way. They know what you are going through, and are there to guide and help you every step of the way.

The program offers different methods and is individualized based on needs

Considering outpatient services over inpatient programs is a great opportunity to give yourself or one of your loved ones a second chance. The programs don’t make one feel attacked, and approach those needing assistance with the care and compassion that they deserve.

The substance abuse is treated, along with any mental disorders that may have stemmed from it in order to get the individual back on track to a healthy life. Short-term and long-term programs are options, so one will never feel alone in their journey of sobriety.