If you think physical health is the only component that leads to an overall healthy life, think again. In addition to physical health, mental health is equally important. Want to know how? Continue reading.
If your goal is to lead a healthy life, it is important that you maintain both your mental and physical health.
All About Mental Health
What is Mental Health?
Mental health is not as easy to define as physical health.
Nevertheless, research defines mental health as the absence of a mental disorder or a state of being that includes social, psychological, and emotional factors that further impact a person’s mental state and ability to function in an environment.
Your mental health impacts how you deal with stress, make decisions, and relate to other individuals in your life. Now that you know what mental health is, let’s learn why it’s important:
Top 10 Reasons Why Mental Health Is Important
Negative impact on Physical Health
According to research, your mental health is linked with your physical health (more on this later). And poor mental health can negatively impact your physical health.
For instance, stress, a common mental health problem, is correlated with obesity, severe headaches, high blood pressure, etc. Therefore, if you want to maintain good physical health do not neglect your mental health.
Mental Health Impacts your Sleep
According to research, sleep and mental health go hand in hand. That means if you aren’t sleeping well, maybe your mental health is contributing to the problem.
For instance, mental health issues like anxiety & depression may lead to sleep disturbances. You may also find yourself waking up at night if you’re under extreme stress. And not getting ample sleep can make you feel tired the entire day and can further aggravate mental stress. So, make sure to stay mentally healthy and get quality sleep.
Mental Health Drains Energy
Mood disorders like depression are commonly associated with decreased energy levels. It is no wonder that some people, even after getting ample sleep, feel low, sluggish, and drained.
Mental Health Impacts How Your Body Recovers
When you’re dealing with a serious physical illness such as cancer, it’s important to get physical treatment. However, not many talks about the impact of positivity and mental health on body recovery.
Research shows that people suffering from neck/head cancer exhibiting depression symptoms showed reduced likeliness of survival as compared to the individuals who had better mental health. It can be deduced that taking care of your mental health can contribute in a positive way to recovery.
Mental Health Impacts your Mood
Your mind is directly related to how you feel, think, act, and also your mood. So, if you’re suffering from a mental health issue, you may find yourself feeling increased sadness or irritability. And the opposite is true, too, which means if your mental health is in a good state, you’ll experience more happiness.
Mental Health Impacts Productivity at Work
Poor mental health can impact job performance, engagement at work, communication, and overall productivity in a negative manner. The research shows that depression interferes with an individual’s ability to do physical jobs about 20% of the time.
You May Resort to Maladaptive Behaviors
As stated earlier, mental health is directly related to how you act. Maladaptive behaviors are behaviors resulting from difficulty adjusting to a situation. If you are struggling with your mental health, your decision-making ability may be negatively impacted. For instance, experts believe that people experiencing depression are more likely to resort to alcohol/substance use as a means to self-medicate than those who are not experiencing depression.
Mental Health can Impact your Relationships
When you experience poor mental health, you are not the only one suffering. Your family suffers too. The change in mood, withdrawal and interest in activities (to list a few) can make it difficult for you to maintain the relationship you once had with those closest to you. It is important to be open and honest with your support system if you are struggling so they can better understand your needs and what you are going through.
Good Mental Health Promotes Clear Thinking
This pointer may sound like a no-brainer but is worth the mention.
When you’re suffering mentally, your entire energy goes into that. And during that time, your mind cannot think as clearly, which may lead to poor decision-making. So, if you wish to promote clearer thinking, try prioritizing your mental health.
Good Mental Health Helps You Deal With Problems Better
Problems in life do not arrive at convenient times. If you are struggling with your mental health, your ability to cope with these problems in a healthy way may be impacted. That is why maintaining good mental health is crucial to your ability to problem solve when life throws curve balls your way.
Types Of Mental Health Problems
Here are some common types of mental health problems:
Mood disorders, as the name indicates, are related to and impact your emotions or mood. Common mood disorders include
- Dysthymic Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
Anxiety disorders impact around 18.1% of the adult population in the United States, making them the most common mental health issue in the country. They’re usually characterized by anxiety that stays for extended intervals. Here are common types of anxiety disorders:
- Panic Disorder
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Social Anxiety Disorder
Psychotic disorders are most commonly known for the disconnect from reality that a person experiences. Psychotic disorders impact 0.25-0.64% of the total American population.
In personality disorders, a person’s natural way of thinking and behaving changes. Here are some examples:
- Narcissistic Personality Disorder
- Antisocial Personality Disorder
- Borderline Personality Disorder
- Dissociative Identity Disorder
As the name indicates, eating disorders impact your regular eating habits for a prolonged period of time. There is a misconception that eating disorders have to do with eating, but they are more related to mental health and can be diagnosed as a mental illness. Common examples are
- Bulimia Nervosa
- Binge Eating
- Anorexia Nervosa
What are the Symptoms of Mental Illness?
Here are some symptoms of mental illness:
- Feeling Sad for Extended Periods of Time
- Confused Thinking
- Reduced Concentration
- Decreased Mood
- Extreme Feelings of Guilt
- Excessive Fears
- Significant Tiredness
- Low Energy
- Sleeping Problems
- Sex Drive Changes
- Withdrawal from Family/Friends
- Alcohol or Drug Use
- Changes in Eating Habits
- Significant Weight Loss/Gain
- Suicidal Thoughts
If you find yourself or your loved one experiencing one or more of the above symptoms, it is important to speak with a mental health specialist.
Treatment and Care for Mental Illness
The treatment and care for mental illness depend on which mental illness you’re experiencing and which stage you are at. So before choosing appropriate treatment, it is important to get an accurate diagnosis. In order to problem solve, you must first have a good understanding of the problem. Some treatments might include:
- Physical Exams: The doctor usually checks for physical problems that might be causing the symptoms.
- Lab Tests: This usually includes screening for drugs and alcohol and your thyroid function.
- A Psychological Evaluation: A mental health professional talks to you to understand your symptoms, thoughts, behavior patterns, and feelings.
Based on what your doctor finds, you’ll be provided with the proper treatment. In some cases, you may be asked to consume medication such as:
- Antipsychotic Medications
- Anti-anxiety Medications
- Mood-stabilizing Medications
You may also be recommended to go for:
- Brain-Stimulation Treatments
- Substance Use Support Treatment
What are The Benefits of Mental Wellness Coaching?
Mental Wellness Coaching can be an effective treatment when it comes to dealing with mental health issues. Here are the benefits it brings along:
Mental wellness coaches are trained to put patients first. With their help, you’ll learn how to put yourself first and promote self-care, which is quite beneficial for dealing with mental health issues.
Helps Deal with Stigmatization
Mental wellness coaches can help you go beneath the surface, address negative self-talk and deal with stigmatization.
Reduces Anxiety and Stress
Mental wellness coaches offer effective ways of dealing with situations that trigger stress which eventually helps reduce both stress and anxiety.
Offers Emotional Support
Sometimes because of the fear of being judged, people never ask for emotional support. However, this can be detrimental to mental health.
Fortunately, mental wellness coaches can easily determine who needs emotional support. They talk to the individuals and calmly listen to them and offer the necessary support, which helps treat the issue.
What is the Connection Between Physical and Mental Health?
Your physical and mental health are closely related. So much so that if you suffer from declining mental health, you’re more likely to suffer from physical health issues such as chronic pain or heart disease. And if you suffer from declining physical health, the likelihood of you developing more stress, anxiety, and depression increases.
On the flip side, if your mental health is blooming, the risk of you suffering from issues such as heart disease reduces. Also, good physical health helps promote good mental health. For instance, a healthy physical workout can help you stay fit and improve your mood at the same time.
11 Inspirational Positive Quotes on Mental Health
“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” — Albus Dumbledore from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” — Aristotle
“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in” ― Leonard Cohen
“Increasing the strength of our minds is the only way to reduce the difficulty of life.” ― Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves” ― Henry David Thoreau
“I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.” — Amy March, from Little Women
“Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think, I’m not going to make it, but you laugh inside — remembering all the times you’ve felt that way.” — Charles Bukowski
“Promise me you’ll always remember — you’re braver than you believe and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” — Christopher Robin from Winnie the Pooh
“In the middle of winter, I, at last, discovered that there was in me an invincible summer.” — Albert Camus
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” — Winston Churchill
“I am bent, but not broken. I am scared, but not disfigured. I am sad, but not hopeless. I am tired, but not powerless. I am angry, but not bitter. I am depressed, but not giving up.” — Anonymous
Top 5 Mental Health Myths Vs Facts
Mental health problems don’t affect me.
- Mental health problems are actually very common. In 2020, about:
- One in five American adults experienced a mental health issue
- One in 6 young people experienced a major depressive episode
- One in 20 Americans lived with a serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depression
Children don’t experience mental health problems.
Even very young children may show early warning signs of mental health concerns. These mental health problems are often clinically diagnosable and can be a product of the interaction of biological, psychological, and social factors.
Half of all mental health disorders show the first signs before a person turns 14 years old, and three-quarters of mental health disorders begin before age 24.
People with mental health problems are violent and unpredictable.
The vast majority of people with mental health problems are no more likely to be violent than anyone else. Most people with mental illness are not violent and only 3%–5% of violent acts can be attributed to individuals living with a serious mental illness.
In fact, people with severe mental illnesses are over 10 times more likely to be victims of violent crime than the general population. You probably know someone with a mental health problem and don’t even realize it, because many people with mental health problems are highly active and productive members of our communities.
People with mental health needs, even those who are managing their mental illness, cannot tolerate the stress of holding down a job.
People with mental health problems are just as productive as other employees. Employers who hire people with mental health problems report good attendance and punctuality as well as motivation, good work, and job tenure on par with or greater than other employees.
When employees with mental health problems receive effective treatment, it can result in:
- Lower total medical costs
- Increased productivity
- Lower absenteeism
- Decreased disability costs
Personality weakness or character flaws cause mental health problems. People with mental health problems can snap out of it if they try hard enough.
Mental health problems have nothing to do with being lazy or weak and many people need help to get better. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:
- Biological factors, such as genes, physical illness, injury, or brain chemistry
- Life experiences, such as trauma or a history of abuse
- Family history of mental health problems
All About Physical Health
What is Physical Health?
Physical health is the normal functioning of your body at all levels:
- A normal set of biological processes to ensure reproduction and survival.
- A balance between the environment and body.
- The absence of painful conditions and diseases.
- The body’s ability to adjust to the random environment changes.
- Participation in socially useful work or social activities.
Top 10 Reasons Physical Health is Important
Physical activity is one of the most significant factors that impact your physical health. So, the below reasons depict the importance of physical health in relation to physical activity.
Weight is an important aspect of physical health. Although health does not have a particular “look” nor can it be determined from outward appearance, regular physical activity can aid in maintaining a happy and healthy weight.
Muscle and Bone Health
Physical activity can help strengthen your muscles and bones, which are essential for your physical health. After all, bones and muscles help you maintain your posture, walk, run, cycle, etc. The stronger your bones and muscles are, the fewer the chances of you getting injured.
Relief from Physical Pain
Pain, especially chronic pain, can negatively impact your physical health. However, with a light physical workout or physical therapy, you can deal with this pain and improve your health.
Lower the Risk of Cancer
Staying physically healthy and doing the recommended amount of exercise can help you lower the risk of certain cancers including lung, stomach, and kidney cancer.
Staying physically healthy involves regular exercise, which keeps you active. This can help protect you from the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, or even a heart attack, which may contribute to a longer lifespan.
Good physical health means one thing less to worry about, which is good for your mood. What’s more, if you have good physical health, you’re more likely to attend parties, interact socially and meet new people. And this can positively impact your mood.
Impact on Mental Health
Poor physical health puts you at risk of developing mental health problems. According to a study, every 1 out of 3 people suffering from a long-term physical health issue also suffers from a mental health issue. So, try to stay physically healthy and ensure good mental health.
Reduce Use of Sick Days
People who aren’t physically healthy are more likely to take more sick days as compared to physically healthy individuals. A prolonged absence at work or the gym can have a negative impact on one’s life, eventually leading to mental health issues. So, stay physically healthy, reduce sick day leaves, and experience bliss.
Your cognitive functions decline as you age, naturally. But this decline speeds up if you aren’t physically healthy. However, if you maintain good physical health, you can slow and even reverse this decline to some extent.
Staying physically healthy helps you stay in a stable state of mind, which is important to achieving quality sleep. Also, by including a workout in your routine, you can fall asleep faster and even combat insomnia.
Types of Physical Health Problems
While there are a host of physical health problems, here are the ones that are responsible for causing the most deaths in the U.S. each year:
Could Physical Health Problems Cause Mental Health Problems?
The answer to this question is more basic than you would expect. Let’s understand this with an example.
Imagine that you’re suffering from a physical health issue that keeps you bedridden. While your friends and family are enjoying their lives out, you cannot get out of your bed. Now, this situation can take a mental toll on you. After a few days, you might feel continuous stress and after some time, might even develop symptoms of depression.
Although indirectly, physical health problems can cause mental health issues.
What are the Symptoms of Physical Health Illnesses?
Symptoms vary from one physical illness to another. For instance, if you’re suffering from heart issues, your blood pressure will be higher than usual, or if you’re suffering from kidney stones, you might feel extreme pain while passing urine.
However, in general, here are some symptoms that might indicate a physical health illness:
- Loss of Appetite
- Muscle aches
If you are noticing the above or any other symptoms and are unsure of what they’re indicating, reach out to your doctor.
5 Steps to Improve Physical Health
A sedentary lifestyle is not good for your physical health. It can lead to obesity, blood pressure issues, and even heart issues. Therefore, include some sort of physical activity such as cycling, running, walking, etc., in your daily routine. This will help you sweat, burn some calories, regulate your metabolism and thus ensure good physical health.
Inadequate consumption of nutrients can cause nutrient deficiencies and lead to a weaker immune system. When your immune system/immunity is weak, your body becomes more prone to diseases/infections which aren’t good for your physical health.
Therefore, consume the required nutrients each day in the form of fruits, vegetables, pulses, etc., and reduce junk food intake. However, if you have a busy schedule go for reliable multivitamin supplements and offer your body the nutrients it needs.
Staying active and energetic is an important part of physical health. However, you cannot stay active and energetic without adequate sleep. It’s because your body heals itself during sleep and prepares itself for the next day. So, sleep an adequate amount each day and experience better mental and physical health.
Avoid Medications for Everything
Do you take medication for conditions such as the common cold? If yes, you may want to think twice (unless advised by your doctor) because you may not be allowing your body to develop and upgrade its defenses. And this can really impair your immune function, making you prone to infections.
So, consume medication only if your doctor recommends it. Otherwise, try to let your body fight off the infection, and you’ll eventually notice better immunity.
Build Better Muscles and Bones
You need to have strong muscles and bones if you want to stay physically healthy and prevent injuries. To achieve this, you can join a gym or hire a physical trainer or coach who’ll take care of your protein/nutrition needs and will provide workout suggestions that can help keep your muscles and bones healthy.
What are the Benefits of Physical Wellness Coaching?
Here’s how physical health and wellness coaching can help you:
Create a Plan
Just desiring improved physical health is not enough; you need to create a plan. And that’s where a physical wellness coach comes in. They can help you create a customized plan according to your goals and assist you in achieving them.
Answer all your Questions
Have questions about your health? No need to search Google for answers. Wellness coaches are certified experts who have research-backed answers to your queries. So, ask them whatever you want to learn about your health.
Don’t know where to start? Thankfully, physical wellness coaching can help. A physical wellness coach can help you gain clarity on what you want to achieve and also help you create a plan, as stated above, on how to get there.
11 Inspirational Positive Quotes on Physical Health
Exercise is the key not only to physical health but to peace of mind — Nelson Mandela
Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity — John F. Kennedy
Health is a state of complete harmony of the body, mind and spirit. When one is free from physical disabilities and mental distractions, the gates of the soul open — B.K.S. Iyengar
Physical fitness can neither be acquired by wishful thinking nor by outright purchase — Joseph Pilates
Taking care of your mental and physical health is just as important as any career move or responsibility — Mireille Guiliano
If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them — Bruce Lee
“The cheerful mind perseveres, and the strong mind hews its way through a thousand difficulties.” – Swami Vivekananda
“Keeping your body healthy is an expression of gratitude to the whole cosmos- the trees, the clouds, everything.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
“Physical well-being necessitates listening to what you already know and then taking it seriously enough to act accordingly. When you wake up and feel the impulse to arch your back, stretch and exhale with a loud sigh, for God’s sake, do it.” ― Darrell Calkins
Physical health doesn’t exist apart from the health of other things. Health ultimately involves the community, and the community ultimately involves the place and natural life of that place, so that real health is harmony with the world — Wendell Berry
A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world — Paul Dudley White
Top Ten Exercise Statistics and Facts
- One of the well-proven exercise facts is that exercising regularly lowers your chances of premature death by 30%.
- 1 in 4 adults doesn’t exercise as much as they should.
- Students who exercise can have higher academic performance.
- Fitness industry statistics reveal that 54% of respondents work out at the gym to stay healthy.
- Exercise statistics show that 24.3% of adults meet the objectives for strength and aerobic exercises.
- The percentage of those who exercise at least three times a week rises with the education level.
- When it comes to exercise and mental health, statistics indicate that regular exercising reduces depression and anxiety symptoms.
- 46.7% of people aged 65 and older reported exercising at least three times a week for at least a half-hour.
- One of the benefits of physical activity is improved sleep.
- 59.4% of men older than 18 reported exercising at least three times a week, exercise stats say.
Both physical and mental health are closely related. If you’re suffering from poor mental health, you’re more likely to suffer from a physical health issue and vice versa. Therefore, make sure to always give equal importance and attention to maintaining good physical and mental health. Follow a balanced diet, sleep well, reduce stress, and exercise regularly if you want to improve your mental and physical health.
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