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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 neurotransmitters.
- 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.
- 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