(Please note, I go into statistics about mental health, which could be upsetting for some. I don’t normally do trigger/content warnings, but with talking about suicide, and doing stats about mental illness and suicide I felt it was important to give a heads up.)
I just found this out today.
It seems fitting to me that lupus and mental health would share a month, especially since they are what I selected to have represented in my Chronic Love Bracelet and they are my two biggest struggles at this point.
I am sitting here trying to decide what to write.
I think first of all… if you are struggling with your mental health, you are not alone. I’m not going to throw statistics around… I just want you to know that you aren’t alone…. there are a lot of us. I personally struggle with bipolar (type 2), anxiety related to my bipolar, and OCD.
Now I think I’ll start throwing around statistics and links.
NAMI’s page of stats.
Oh… NAMI is the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
http://www.newsweek.com/nearly-1-5-americans-suffer-mental-illness-each-year-230608 have a mental illness.
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US. (Source)
Unlike diabetes or cancer there is no medical test that can provide a diagnosis of mental illness. A health care professional can do a number of things in an evaluation including a physical exam and long term monitoring to rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be causing symptoms. Once other medical conditions are ruled out, a person might be referred to a mental health professional that will use The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth addition (DSM-5), to make a diagnosis. The DSM-5, published by the American Psychiatric Association lists criteria including feelings, symptoms and behaviors over a period of time that a person must meet in order to be officially diagnosed with an illness. – See more at: https://www.nami.org/Find-Support/Living-with-a-Mental-Health-Condition/Understanding-Your-Diagnosis#sthash.1R5rXebT.dpuf (Source – with other info on the process, and on diagnosis in general)
At least 25 – 50% of bipolar patients attempt suicide at least once.
There is hope.
Myth: Recovery from bipolar disorder is not possible. Reality: Appropriate treatment can allow a person to have a meaningful, fulfilling life. For years, bipolar disorder was viewed as a permanent, untreatable problem. People were more likely to be locked away than given the opportunity for recovery. Significantly, today the focus is on wellness and reintegration into society. Despite having a persistent illness, a person can achieve substantial improvement in managing symptoms and lead a productive, fulfilling life.
Up to 80% of those treated for depression show an improvement in their symptoms generally within four to six weeks of beginning medication, psychotherapy, attending support groups or a combination of these treatments. (National Institute of Health, 1998)
It is possible to have romantic relationships.