Posts Tagged ‘people with mental illnesses’

What Is Mental Illness?

June 7, 2013

Mental illness is a disease that causes mild to severe disturbances in thinking, perception, and behavior. If these disturbances significantly impair a person’s ability to cope with life’s ordinary demands and routines, then he or she should immediately seek proper treatment with a mental health professional. With the proper care and treatment, a person can recover and resume normal activities.

Many mental illnesses are believed to have biological causes, just like  cancer, diabetes and heart disease, but some mental disorders are caused by a person’s environment and experiences.

Common Misconceptions About Mental Illness:

  • Myth: “Young people and children don’t suffer from mental health problems.”
  • Fact: It is estimated that more than six million young people in America may suffer from a mental health disorder that severely disrupts their ability to function at home, in school, or in their community.
  • Myth: “People who need psychiatric care should be locked away in institutions.”
  • Fact: Today most people can lead productive lives within their communities thanks to a variety of supports, programs, and/or medications.
  • Myth: “A person who has had a mental illness can never be normal.”
  • Fact: People with mental illnesses can recover and resume normal activities.
  • Myth: “Mentally ill people are dangerous.”
  • Fact: The vast majority of people with mental illnesses are not violent. In the cases when violence does occur, the incidents typically result from the same reasons as with the general public, such as feeling threatened or excessive use of alcohol and/or drugs.
  • Myth: “People with mental illnesses can work low-level jobs but aren’t suited for really important or responsible positions.”
  • Fact: People with mental illnesses, like everyone else, have the potential to work at any level depending on their own abilities, experience and motivation.
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