Mental disorders are extremely widespread across the world. In fact, one out of five people in Canada will experience a mental health disorder at some point in their life.
This is concerning, because serious mental disorders like bipolar disorder, chronic depression, PTSD, schizophrenia, and anxiety disorders can lead to people committing suicide. While suicide itself is not a mental illness, suicidal ideation is a major concern. It is reported that some 5,800 people commit suicide in Canada annually.
Luckily, all these disorders have behavioural symptoms that can be identified by people around the person. Here are some common symptoms that are indicative of a mental disorder. Medical care should be pursued as soon as any of these are identified.
- Excessive moodiness and sadness: long-lasting sadness is not normal behaviour. Extreme mood swings and rage are also red flags. The human brain has its natural cycles and balancing mechanisms that balance out emotional behaviour. Abnormal emotional behaviour is a mental condition that needs immediate medical care.
- Hopelessness: prolonged hopelessness is not mere stoic behaviour. It is the feeling of not seeing anything good in the future. This leads to a hatred of life and eventually, even to suicide.
- Insomnia:adequate sleep is necessary for healthy living. Lack of sleep affects a person’s perception and emotional balance. This, in turn, can lead to more serious mental health problems.
- Changes in appearance: people who are suicidal display general disregard about their appearance.
- Self-harm: harmful activities like engaging in unsafe sex, using drugs and alcohol, and reckless driving are signs that a person no longer values their life.
- Recent trauma: traumatic experiences lead to disinterest and a lack of will to live.
- Actual warnings:more than half the people who actually attempt suicide give a warning sign to close friends or family beforehand. These warnings should be taken seriously, and the person should be given proper care.
- Final preparations: before committing suicide, people try to set their affairs in order. They will meet close friends and family, give away loved possessions to desired persons, clean up their surrounding, etc.
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