Mental illnesses are real diseases. They're painful, and lonely, and can lead to feelings of hopelessness. The box below has tabs with
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Addiction is a complex condition, a brain disease that is manifested by compulsive substance use despite harmful consequence. People with addiction (severe substance use disorder) have an intense focus on using a certain substance(s), such as alcohol or drugs, to the point that it takes over their life. They keep using alcohol or a drug even when they know it will cause problems. Yet a number of effective treatments are available and people can recover from addiction and lead normal, productive lives.
People with anxiety disorders respond to certain objects or situations with fear and dread. They have physical reactions to those objects, such as a rapid heartbeat and sweating. An anxiety disorder is diagnosed if a person:
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental illness. People who have it go through unusual mood changes. They go from very happy, "up," and active to very sad and hopeless, "down," and inactive, and then back again. They often have normal moods in between. The up feeling is called mania. The down feeling is depression.
Depression is a serious medical illness. It's more than just a feeling of being sad or "blue" for a few days. They persist and interfere with your everyday life. Symptoms can include
Depression is a disorder of the brain. There are a variety of causes, including genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors.
Eating disorders involve extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors involving weight and food. The most common eating disorders include:
If you have obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), you have repeated, upsetting thoughts called obsessions. You do the same thing over and over again to try to make the thoughts go away. Those repeated actions are called compulsions.
Examples of obsessions are a fear of germs or a fear of being hurt. Compulsions include washing your hands, counting, checking on things or cleaning. Untreated, OCD can take over your life.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a real illness. You can get PTSD after living through or seeing a traumatic event, such as war, a hurricane, rape, physical abuse or a bad accident. PTSD makes you feel stressed and afraid after the danger is over. It affects your life and the people around you.
PTSD can cause problems like:
If someone you know is showing one or more of the following behaviors, he or she may be thinking about suicide. Don’t ignore these warning signs. Get help immediately.