Why is Mental Health Important ?

The past two years have been unarguably the most difficult period in everyone's life when the world was seized by the SARS-COV-2 pandemic. The pandemic and the lockdown kept most of us locked up indoors and we were forced into social isolation. This official lockdown came with many uncertainties - our jobs, our finances. our health, the health of our loved ones, everything was at risk. It was harder still for mothers who were working from home, they had to cook and clean, look after children's studies, and meet office deadlines. God forbid if one or more of the family members caught the virus, then besides bringing a whole lot of new responsibilities , it would also add to her worries.

In short, this pandemic has tested us for both our moral and physical grit.

With so many young people dying without any pre-existing disease during the COVID epidemic, the question arises - Is being physically healthy enough ?

While physical fitness is important, medical experts (me included) stress the fact that more than our physical health our mental health is more important in the pandemic. Today in this post we shall discuss about mental health, what it means to have sound mental health, why mental health matters, and how to achieve this body-mind balance.

What is Mental health?

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. By well -being we could mean adjustment. As human beings grow, we struggle through different life experiences and try to find the mental framework that can help us cope with new situations and experiences. We are constantly striving to reach that stage of equilibrium between our thought process and our environment. When we experience an emotional and psychological harmony with our environment, family, and society, you could say we are in a good mental state. That means we can cope with the challenges and change in our atmosphere.

Our mental status affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determines how well we can handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Our lives are in constant transition and that is why mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence to old age.

What determines our Mental Health?

Many factors determine our  Mental well-being 

Genetics and Heredity - Our family passes on the genetic material that determines whether we could suffer from schizophrenia or depression. These are factors beyond our control. Though advances in genetic engineering offer hope in the distant future, that we may be able to split out the genes that code for these diseases.

Life experiences - We undergo so many ups and downs in life, those experiences shape our thinking and also affect our mental state.

Physical disease - Disease especially chronic, debilitating, and long-lasting can also affect our emotional and mental outlook in life.

Drugs - Some drugs and medicines when taken can cause certain side effects for instance a popular drug of the benzodiazepines class of medicines, Xanax (alprazolam), is used to treat anxiety, but in rare cases, such drugs may cause depression, manic symptoms, memory impairment, or difficulty concentrating. Sudden withdrawal may provoke signs of physical dependence and even seizures. 

Beta Blockers, commonly prescribed for hypertension and anxiety can cause depression.

Estrogen in Hormonal Replacement Therapy or Birth control pills that are progestin-only can cause mood swings, depressed mood, etc.(Ref- https://www.verywellmind.com/drugs-that-can-cause-depression-1067458 )


Why is Mental Health important for us?

Mental Health is everything - The Mind governs our body . The  Hypothalamus, located in our brain is the master gland of our body. It is responsible for everything from appetite, sleep, neurological functions, it regulates the hormones that control our metabolic functions and sexual function, etc. Stress, anxiety, and depression directly impact the secretion of hormones from the hypothalamus and cause major changes in the way our body functions.

A healthy mind resides in a healthy body but vice -versa holds truer!

4 Key Benefits of Positive mental health 

1.We can achieve our full potential

2.We cope better with the stresses of our life

3.Our productivity increases with more focus and less procrastination

4.A productive and happy person in turn contributes more to their communities


How can one achieve positive mental health?

1.Connect with others 

2.Maintain a  positive outlook in life

3.Become more physically active

4.Practice compassion and help others

5.Get enough sleep to recharge those neurons and synapses

Get professional help if you need it, staying in doubt or denial will only make it worse.

                " This post is a part of Blogchatter's initiative #CauseAChatter "

Learn More About Mental Health

1. Ten ways how Exercise can benefit your Mental Health

2. A Complete guide to Post- COVID Mental Health Issues

3. 10 warning Signs of Suicide

(Image credits -Canva , Pexels )


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