Many people don’t feel comfortable talking about their mental health. 19% of adults have a diagnosable mental health issue, but most don’t seek help because they are ashamed or think they should handle their problems on their own. Feelings of stigma prevent them from getting the treatment they need. Recognize the signs of mental illness in adults that matter most to you by asking yourself the following questions:
1. Are They Acting Different?
- What to Look For: A gradual or sudden change in behavior. Signs of mental illness in adults may manifest as behaviors that don’t match their values or past decisions.
- What to Do: Trust your instincts and say something. Approach the person with compassion, not accusations. Share your observations of their behavior and ask if there is anything you can do to help.
2. Are They Agitated?
- What to Look For: Problems controlling anger and staying calm. They might have very strong reactions to relatively small things.
- What to Do: They may get even more defensive and angry when you show concern. You might have to follow up multiple times if they have a hot temper. Don’t be discouraged.
3. Are They Withdrawn?
- What to Look For: They isolate themselves from their social support network. A once social person might cancel plans, avoid human interaction, and stop participating in activities they once enjoyed.
- What to Do: Let them know you are there for them. They still have a social support network even if they try to distance themselves from it.
4. Are They Taking Care of Themselves?
- What to Look For: Signs of mental illness in adults can be physical, including disregard for personal hygiene, sleep deprivation, and substance abuse problems. They may self-medicate with alcohol and other drugs.
- What to Do: Self-destructive behavior isolates the person even more from the support they need. Recognize these signs as symptoms to bigger mental health problems, and encourage them to get help.
5. Do They Feel Hopeless?
- What to Look For: Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, grief, and guilt. Pay extra attention for suggestions of suicidal thoughts.
- What to Do: Encourage them to see a therapist. They need help to realize their self-worth, overcome grief and guilt, and become hopeful again.
Treatment for Signs of Mental Illness in Adults at Morningside Recovery
If you begin noticing these signs in yourself or someone you love, then it’s time to get help. Morningside Recovery offers a full spectrum of care for mental health treatment. Some of our program options include:
To learn more about these programs or to begin the admissions process, call us today at 855-631-2135.