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People can recover and live productive lives.

Mental Illness Facts

Severe mental illnesses are:

  • Neurobiological brain disorders that profoundly disrupt a person's ability to think, feel & relate to others & their environment.
  • Caused by chemical imbalances in the way the brain metabolizes neuro¬≠transmitters.
  • More common than cancer, diabetes or heart disease. "One in every four people will experience a mental illness in their lifetime." (American Medical Association.)
  • Treatable. Prompt and appropriate treatment improves the long-term outlook, reduces symptoms and the risk of relapse.

Warning Signs

  • Marked personality change
  • Confused thinking; strange or grandiose ideas
  • Out of touch with reality
  • Prolonged severe depression, apathy or extreme highs and lows
  • Excessive anxieties, fears or suspiciousness; blaming others; paranoia
  • Withdrawal from society, friendlessness; abnormal self-centeredness
  • Denial of obvious problems; strong resistance to help
  • Thinking or talking about attempting suicide
  • Marked changes in eating or sleeping patterns
  • Anger or hostility out of proportion to the situation
  • Delusions; hallucinations; voices
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs
  • Growing inability to cope with problems; school, job or personal needs
  • Obsessions or compulsions