UNDERSTANDING THE FACTS IS THE FIRST STEP!
Happiness and suffering can be divided into two main categories: mental and physical. Of the two, it’s the mind that exerts the greatest influence over us. So long as we’re not ill or lacking basic necessities, and our body is content, we virtually ignore it. The mind, however, registers everything that happens to us, no matter how small. Therefore, we should focus our efforts on bringing about mental peace ~ the Dalai Lama
This is what I call Mental WELLth!
It helps us get out of harm’s way and prepare for important events, and it warns us when we need to take action. But you may experience anxiety that is persistent, seemingly uncontrollable, and overwhelming. If it’s an excessive, irrational dread of everyday situations, it can be disabling. When anxiety interferes with daily activities, you may have an anxiety disorder.
The term “anxiety disorder” includes Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Panic Disorder and Panic Attacks and Separation Anxiety to name just a few. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are also closely related to anxiety disorders, which some people may experience at the same time, along with Depression.
Anxiety and Depression
It’s not uncommon for someone with an anxiety disorder to also suffer from depression or vice versa. Nearly one-half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.
Most people feel anxious or depressed at times. Losing a loved one, getting fired from a job, going through a divorce, and other difficult situations can lead a person to feel sad, lonely, scared, nervous, or anxious. These feelings are normal reactions to life’s stressors.
But sadly some people experience these feelings daily or nearly daily for no apparent reason, making it difficult to carry on with normal, everyday functioning. These people may have an anxiety disorder, depression, or both.
Depression is a condition in which a person feels discouraged, sad, hopeless, unmotivated, or disinterested in life in general. When these feelings last for a short period of time, it may be a case of “the blues.” But when such feelings last for more than two weeks and when the feelings interfere with daily activities such as taking care of family, spending time with friends, or going to work or school, it’s likely a major depressive episode and intervention required.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
It’s not unusual for people who have experienced traumatic events to have flashbacks, nightmares, or intrusive memories when something terrible happens — like the 9/11 terrorist attacks and those in Paris or the bombings at the 2013 Boston Marathon.
PTSD is a serious and potentially debilitating condition that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a natural disaster, serious accident, terrorist incident, sudden death of a loved one, war, violent personal assault such as rape, or other life-threatening events. Most people who experience such events recover from them over time, but people with PTSD continue to be severely depressed and anxious for months or even years following the event.
Women are twice as likely to develop PTSD as men, and children can also develop it. PTSD often occurs with depression, substance abuse, or other anxiety disorders.
Grief and Loss
When we think of grief, more often than not we think of it in relation to the death of a loved one – but the reality is that grief is also felt in other situations such as the breakdown of a marriage/relationship, or even loss of job or career. It can also affect a parent when there are child custody issues.
Grief is a natural response to any kind of loss – not just in death, and can affect our thoughts, feelings, behaviours, beliefs, physical health and relationships with others. Many people experience feelings of sadness, anger, anxiety, fear and numbness. The experience of grief can sometimes feel like a storm. A person may feel that the storm has passed, but then be surprised when the next storm strikes.
Although grief can be very painful, most people find that with the support of their family and friends, they gradually find ways to learn to live with their loss and do not need to seek professional help.
Post Traumatic Grief
Sometimes however, the circumstances of a death/loss may have been particularly distressing, such as a traumatic or sudden death – this is when normal grief can give way to complicated or acute grief, known as Post Traumatic Grief.
Traumatic Grief is a way of defining grief thoughts and reactions that are more traumatic (and consequently challenging), than those generally suffered after a loss, and which last longer than two months. A sudden and unexpected loss or bereavement is more likely to result in traumatic grief reactions.