When people hear the word mental illness, they almost immediately think of psychopaths. Mental illness does not mean a person is crazy, but they have distress or impairment issues that can cause problems. Mental illness, often referred to as “mental disorder” affects nearly one-fourth of the US population. Unfortunately, there are many cases per year of mental illness patients that commit hideous acts such as school shooting, violence, murder and suicide. It is important to recognize the signs of a person with distress and try to get them mental attention. Mental illness not only involves the mind but also the brain and/or body. People who suffer from different types of mental illnesses often have their daily activities interrupted because of their diminished ability to cope with daily life.
Types of Mental Illnesses
There are different types of mental illnesses that can affect the state of a person. Some of the most common type of mental illnesses include:
These types of disorder are classified into three different categories A, B and C. In the A category disorders are eccentric such as paranoid personality disorder, schizoid personality disorder and schizotypal personality disorder. People with this category of personality disorder tend to be mistrusting, prefer to be alone and believe they can see the future.
- The B category involves dramatic disorder such as antisocial, bipolar disorder, histrionic and narcissistic disorders. Antisocial disorder patients tend to show no mercy or remorse for others. Bipolar patients or borderline personality disorder patients view the world as good and bad. They have two types of personalities in which one instant they can be happy and the next minute they are upset and angry. For people who need to be the center of attention, they suffer from histrionic personality disorder. Narcissistic personality disorder patients feel the need to blame others for their misfortunes.
- People in the C category tend to be fearful and have avoidant, dependent and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. OCPD is often confused with OCD, but they are two different disorders. Those who suffer from OCPD are stubborn and need to be perfect all the time. For people who seek the approval or acceptance of others suffer from dependent personality disorder. Like anti-social disorder, those who suffer from avoidant personality disorder prefer to be alone because the fear rejection.
Mental illness does not only affect the mind but also the body. People with eating disorders can suffer from anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating and night eating disorders. Anorexia patients feel it is necessary to lose excessive amounts of weight by starvation. Bulimia patients prefer to eat an extensive amount of food but then purge the food via: vomiting, laxative use, fasting and diet pills.
When panic sets in, know that anxiety disorders are often to blame. The fear and anxiety about daily activities, events and occasions can cause a person’s mental state to crumple. Some of the types of anxiety disorders include phobias, panic disorders, social anxiety, post-traumatic stress, separation anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, agoraphobia and generalized anxiety disorder. It is often heard said that infants, toddlers and children suffer the most from separation anxiety disorder. This is usually associated to the beginning of a new school camp or a mother’s need to go back to work.
People who suffer from mental illnesses should be treated with respect and kindness. Some of the other forms of mental illnesses that are not listed above include: Tic disorder, sexual and gender disorders, mood disorder, impulse control disorder, addiction disorder and stress response disorder. Sometimes their genetic makeup gets in the way of their mental state and they cannot control their illness.