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  • Writer's pictureJesse Liu

Signs of Mental Illnesses

Updated: Oct 17, 2021

Welcome back to my blog! Exciting times for postseason baseball and shout out to all the Red Sox fans reading my blog. Boston holds a special place in my heart, as I was born there. Anyways, back to mental health, sorry for the quick shout out. This next blog will be about the signs of different mental illnesses, and I hope by reading this blog, you will be more aware and cognizant of some of the different types of mental illnesses. The different types of mental illnesses that I will cover in this blog will be: bipolar disorder (manic depression), anxiety, psychosis, schizophrenia, PTSD, and eating disorders. Although I am very familiar with bipolar disorder and psychosis, I am not as familiar with anxiety, schizophrenia, PTSD, and eating disorders; for the mental illnesses which I am not as familiar with, I will use information from WebMD to help me write about the signs of those mental illnesses.

I’m starting off with signs of bipolar disorder because it is the mental illness that I am most familiar with, as I am bipolar myself. To normally be diagnosed with bipolar disorder, one must have experienced both depression and mania. I was hospitalized for both depressive and manic episodes. Some signs of depression may include: lack of energy, constantly sleeping, thoughts of suicide, expressing suicidal thoughts, weight gain or weight loss, trouble sleeping, and change of mood in general. On the other hand, signs of mania may include: sudden increase in energy, grandiose thoughts, false beliefs in superiority, aggression, irritability, and spending sprees. When you recognize these signs in yourself or another person, it is IMPERATIVE that you seek help or encourage the other person to seek help, either via a therapist or a psychiatrist.

Next, let’s discuss signs of anxiety. Anxiety is extremely common in the population, and if left untreated, can escalate to depression and suicidal thoughts, as well as worsened production at work or school. Signs of anxiety can include: nervousness, increased heartbeat/heart rate, trouble concentrating or breathing, fearfulness, hyperventilation or quickened breathing, and feeling in danger or in panic. Once again, it is extremely important that you seek help in ways as mentioned in the aforementioned paragraph.

I’ve also experienced psychosis, or a psychotic episode in college, which I was also hospitalized for. Psychosis normally occurs with paranoid delusions, and signs of psychosis include: difficulty concentrating or thinking normally, fearfulness, self-isolation, panic, hallucinations, agitation, and less self-care. Please seek help as discussed before if you experience or witness others experiencing symptoms of psychosis.

One of the most serious forms of mental illness is schizophrenia. Schizophrenia overlaps with psychosis but can also include hearing thoughts and voices in addition to hallucinations. Signs of schizophrenia include: self or social isolation, agitation and nervousness, aggression, hostility, paranoia, and mental confusion. Schizophrenia is extremely serious, as all mental illnesses are, so please seek help IMMEDIATELY if you experience or witness others experiencing symptoms of schizophrenia.

PTSD, short for post-traumatic stress disorder, is another form of mental illness that must be treated as soon as possible. Signs of PTSD can include: unwanted rumination or flashbacks of the traumatic event, self-harm, avoidance of situations of the trauma or associations with the trauma, and even anxiety and depression. Please seek help if you or others experience signs of PTSD.

Eating disorders are also extremely common yet serious in the population. There are different types of eating disorders that I will discuss. Signs of anorexia eating disorder would be purposely eating less calories (in a significant amount) to lose weight. Signs of bulimia eating disorder would be binge eating before purging the food through vomiting, fasting, or strenuous exercise. Then there is also binge eating disorder, which is demonstrated through participating in binge eating without purging the food. Lastly, ARFID, short for Avoid Restrictive Food Intake Disorder, is indicated through the deliberate restriction of consumption of certain foods to the point that normal nutritional intake is not met. In short, eating disorders are also extremely serious and must be treated as soon as possible when signs of them are evident.

On the whole, thank you for reading my blog on signs of mental illness. I’m doing my best to raise more awareness about signs of mental illness. Please share this blog, in particular this post, with friends and family. Also, if interested, please subscribe to my blog at the end of the home page. Have a great day!

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I've been living with bipolar disorder since 2018 and I'm trying to overcome it by helping others with mental health issues/conditions!

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