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Mental Health and Stress Related Conditions

Mental health is an indicator of psychological well-being of an individual. It is quite common to experience sadness, anxiety, irritability or moodiness occasionally in life. However, if these feelings occur regularly and interfere with a person's ability to function well physically or socially, he/she may have a mental health condition. Some of the most common types of mental illness include anxiety, depressive, behavioural, and substance-abuse disorders.

Anxiety may take the form of phobias (lasting and unreasonable fear caused by the presence or thought of a specific object or situation that usually poses little or no actual danger), social anxiety (intense and irrational fear in specific social situations), general anxiety (nervousness and anxiety in almost all social situations), panic disorders (recurring episodes of sudden, severe, debilitating or immobilizing panic attacks), and OCD (uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts, and repetitive, ritualized behaviours that one feels compelled to perform). Depressive disorders may involve feelings of sadness and despair, severe mood swings, and lose of motivation/interest in activities usually enjoyed by the individual. A problem such as difficulty in sustaining attention, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviour is a chronic behavioural condition that may begin in childhood and may even persist into adulthood. Substance abuse involves a pattern of harmful use of any illicit drugs/over-the-counter drugs for purposes other than those for which they are indicated.

Treatment for mental ailments involves a combination of psychotherapy and medication specific to the disorder. In order to attain good mental health, it is important to adopt healthy lifestyle practices such as eating right, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

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