Dr Hilary Jones' Healthcare Guide - Essex, Kent & Sussex - (Page 115)

PSYCHIATRY – MENTAL HEALTHCARE PEACE OF mind Mental health problems can affect anyone, of any age and background T PHOTOGRAPH: Getty Images he increasing numbers of which is more intense, runs deeper and lasts longer. Depression results in a loss of interest in celebrities revealing they have life, difficulty making decisions, loss of appetite, suffered with depression is having its benefits. It’s helping restlessness, exhaustion and, in severe cases, suicidal thoughts. It’s the most common mental to break down the stigma illness in the UK, affecting one in 10 people, attached to mental health and more women than men. problems, which can only be a good thing, as conditions of this nature affect one in four people in the UK at some point in their lives. WHAT CAUSES IT? Many doctors and health Mental illness is just like any other disease professionals believe that some people have affecting the body, except it affects the brain. a predisposition to depression, caused by a The human brain processes millions of genetic fault in their brain chemistry. Bouts electrical signals every minute, and it takes just of depression can then be triggered by stress, one signal to go wrong to create a problem. bereavement, a relationship break-up, It’s not known why some people develop long-term illness or drug abuse – or there mental illness and others don’t. may be no obvious trigger at all. There may be a genetic TREATMENT Mild cases can be disposition, and lifestyle improved by healthy eating, regular Regular exercise factors, such as stress and exercise and the herb St John’s wort, outdoors could halve recreational drugs, are but always consult your GP before your risk of poor mental health, says believed to contribute. taking herbal remedies, as they may a University of Mental illness can take interact with other medicines you are Glasgow study several forms, including anxiety, taking. Counselling, psychotherapy and phobias, depression, dementia antidepressants can also be beneficial. and eating disorders. We take a closer look at two of the most talked-about – depression and bipolar disorder. Also known as manic depression, bipolar is characterised by recurrent episodes of extreme moods – euphoria, say, followed by depression. During the manic phases, sufferers experience There’s a huge difference between feeling feelings of elation, restlessness and have an a bit down and having a bout of depression, OF PEOPLE WITH MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES ARE NO LONGER AFFECTED BY THEIR CONDITION AFTER 18 MONTHS increased interest in sex. They may also make unrealistic plans and spend money recklessly. The depressive bouts can include loss of confidence, loss of appetite, agitation, sleep disturbance, avoiding other people and thoughts of suicide. These changes can happen rapidly or slowly, with each phase lasting weeks or even months. WHAT CAUSES IT? Again, the causes aren’t known, but genes play a part. It’s thought that chemical imbalances in the part of the brain that controls mood are also responsible, and stress can trigger mood swings, as well. TREATMENT Mood stabilisers are often prescribed as they help balance emotions. Cognitive behaviour therapy may also help, and people with bipolar are advised to learn to recognise their triggers, develop coping strategies, exercise more and avoid stress.  50% Get out Bipolar disorder Depression Dr Hilary Jones’ Healthcare guide – Essex, Kent and Sussex 115

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dr Hilary Jones' Healthcare Guide - Essex, Kent & Sussex

editor’s letter
A healthy hello from Dr Hilary
NEWS and views
the big interview
Question time
A weighty issue
fitness for free
Top nosh
Make the right decision
choosing the best
breast cancer
cosmetic surgery
Ear, nose and throat
obstetrics and gynaecology
oral surgery

Dr Hilary Jones' Healthcare Guide - Essex, Kent & Sussex