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What is Mental Health: A Mindful Approach To Your Mental Well-Being

what is mental health

Mental health is being talked about a lot right now, but it’s often thrown around without ever being explained. What is mental health? And why is mental health important? 

More people struggle with their mental health than you may think—we just don’t talk about it enough. Changing the stigma around mental health starts with having an honest discussion.

Awareness is the first step towards healing and maintaining a healthy mind. So if you struggle with a mental illness or have been feeling strange and you can’t figure out why, this blog article will go over some of the most common types of mental health issues and how to treat them. 

Keep reading to know what mental health means, what mental health issues are, and what mental health looks like.   

What is Mental Health? The First Step Towards Healing

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health is “a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realize their abilities, learn well and work well, and contribute to their community.”

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social needs. When one or more aspects of these needs aren’t being met, mental illness can take root. 

Mental health has been a topic of much debate in recent years because studies have shown that mental health is decreasing, with more and more people experiencing mental illness.


What Causes Mental Illness?

Mental health consists of our thoughts, emotions, behaviors, and past experiences. It has many different causes, including: 

  • Genes and brain chemistry are examples of biological influences
  • Events in one's life, such as abuse or trauma
  • The presence of a mental health disorder in the family,

If you struggle with your mental health, it may affect how you feel, think, and act over the course of your lifetime. 

Sustaining a healthy mental state is crucial at any age, from early development to old age. Despite the widespread usage of the mental health definition in the medical community, it is essential to note that many mental health issues have physical causes. We can't help but let our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors be influenced by them. Social, occupational, or family functioning problems have been linked to mental health issues. It also plays a role in influencing our stress responses, interpersonal dynamics, and decision-making.

But these mental health problems can be addressed. Most people who suffer from mental illness can still go about their regular lives with virtual mental illness therapy

Types of Mental Illness

There are more mental health issues, or mental disorders, than we can cover here. They can all be found in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), which therapists use to diagnose and treat mental health issues. 

Common types of mental illnesses include:

This is not an exhaustive list. Some mental illnesses are more severe than others, but all mental disorders exist on a spectrum. For example, you can have mild depression or you can have severe depression. The severity of your mental illness will determine how invasive the symptoms are and the treatment methods to help you get better. 

Curious if you have a mental health disorder? Take our mental health self-assessment to screen yourself for common mental illnesses.

Early Warning Signs of Mental Health Issues You Should Not Ignore

There is a stigma attached to discussing mental health meaning, which is why many people choose not to talk about it. People of any age, gender, geographical location, socioeconomic level, race, ethnicity, religion or spiritual belief, sexual orientation, background, or another facet of cultural identity can be affected by mental illness.

One or more of the following emotions or actions may indicate a developing problem:

  • Overindulging or undersleeping
  • Social Isolation
  • Apathy 
  • Experiencing anguish 
  • Feeling of hopelessness
  • Substance abuse
  • Experiencing disorientation
  • Forgetfulness, anxiety, anger, 
  • Extreme mood swings 
  • A mental state characterized by intrusive, repetitive, and unavoidable thoughts and recollections
  • Experiencing hallucinations
  • Having suicidal thoughts 
  • Incapability to take care of basic responsibilities
  • Intense and ongoing economic and societal pressure
  • Personality changes 
  • Intense mood swings

If you see any of these early sings in yourself or a loved one, reach out a licensed therapist

Our experts help you learn the signs, symptoms, and treatments for mental illness.
Browse licensed therapists near you, or talk to us to find the one who meets your needs.

Risk Factors of Mental Health Conditions

Mental health issues can result from many factors, and unfortunately, no two cases are the same. That said, some frequent contributors can tip the scales, ultimately leading to mental health problems. 

With so many potential triggers for mental health issues, it is critical that individuals know that nothing is outside the realm of help. There are resources available in the community, online, and through therapy and the right mental health therapist  in order to get individuals back on the path for psychological stability.

Personality Factors

People who have lower self-esteem, resilience, or self-worth tend to be more at risk for developing a mental health issue. Also, people who are more neurotic tend to develop mental illnesses at a higher rate. Neuroticism is a personality trait that predisposes one to feelings of distress. That friend who isn’t shaken by anything probably has very low neuroticism.

Biological Factors

The presence of a predisposing gene in a family for the genetic risk factors for mental health disorders.  However, many additional elements play a role in the emergence of these conditions.

Just because you carry a gene for a mental health condition doesn't mean you'll end up with that disorder. Similarly, mental health problems can occur in persons with no family history of the disorder.

Some physical illnesses, such as cancer, diabetes, and chronic pain, have been linked to the development of mental health issues like depression and anxiety.

Environmental Factors

Mental health in children is a growing concern. While the causes of mental health issues vary from individual to individual, there are some common factors that can contribute to mental health issues in children. 

These include unhealthy family dynamics, such as large amounts of family conflict or emotional detachment; difficult social and academic experiences, like bullying or poor grades; physical health conditions; and inadequate access to resources that are available to address their needs. 

Many times a combination of these factors can lead to mental illness in children, so being able to recognize them quickly is essential in getting the help they need.

How Early Diagnosis & Mental Health Treatment Can Help Stay Above Water

Mental health problems can be managed and even improved when properly cared for. People with therapy and mental health issues often make full recoveries.

The threshold between a minor mood or thought issue and a major mental health worry is not always apparent. For example, feeling sad or down is natural when someone has recently lost a loved one. However, medical attention may be necessary if the low mood persists, causes distress, or gets in the way of regular functioning. Even if you don't perceive the changes or problems, your loved ones may.

It's possible that a mental disorder is linked to or a symptom of a physical sickness. For instance, a thyroid disorder may contribute to the onset of depressive symptoms. Thus, a comprehensive health evaluation, including a physical exam, is typically required for a mental health diagnosis. 

Many individuals with mental health issues do not get the help they need because of the stigma that surrounds these issues and their treatment.

Seeking professional help from a mental health practitioner is a great way to start the process of understanding common factors for mental health issues and developing suitable strategies for managing them.

Treatment for Mental Health Conditions

You don't have to struggle in silence. Thanks to the revolution in the medical field, especially how we talk now about mental health is a welcoming sign. 

Even if you feel none of the mentioned symptoms apply to you or it's just minor, move beyond the stated and start investing in yourself. There is no harm in seeking therapy, irrespective of your condition.

New Year Goals

A range of mental health treatments is available, depending on the severity and type of condition. This can include lifestyle adjustments such as exercising regularly and eating healthy foods, talking therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy that helps change negative thought patterns, medication, or sometimes other more invasive treatments like electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). 

It’s best to work with a mental health therapist to determine which course of action is most suitable given the individual's diagnosis and circumstances. Above all else, it's important to remember that mental health issues can be effectively treated with many options available - so don't hesitate to reach out and get the help you need.

Why is mental health important? 

Mental health doesn’t get the same spotlight as physical health. We know to eat healthy, get enough exercise, and sleep well (even if we don’t always listen to that advice). But how do you stay mentally healthy? And why does mental health even matter?

Emotions, thoughts, communication, learning, resiliency, hope, and self-esteem depend on a healthy mind. Relationships, emotional well-being, and the ability to contribute positively to society depend on mental health. Our mental health is linked to our resilience, self-esteem, and self-worth. This means that how healthy we are mentally (and emotionally and socially) determines how well we handle stress, setbacks, social interactions, and life decisions. It also impacts how we relate to others, our habits and structure of our days, and our physical health. 

The mind-body connection is well-researched. When we struggle with our mental health, our physical health suffers. And when our physical health takes a hit, our mental health struggles. This is why anxiety can make us feel nauseous and going for a run can brighten our mood. 

How Common is Mental Illness?

About 20% of American adults will have a mental health issue in any given year.

According to

  • Nearly one in five (19%) U.S. adults experience some form of mental illness.
  • One in 24 (4.1%) has a serious mental illness
  • One in 12 (8.5%) has a diagnosable substance use disorder.

“Serious mental illness” is defined by psychiatric conditions that are usually life-long and require a mix of medication and treatment. Unlike anxiety, depression, ADHD, and other forms of mental illness, these psychiatric conditions usually cannot be handled without medical help. They include personality disorders, Bipolar, and Schizophrenia, just to name a few.

When do most mental illnesses start?

Most mental illnesses start young, during adolescence or as a young adult. 50% begin by age 14 and 75% begin by age 25.

Can mental health change?

Yes! Mental health is heavily influenced by factors within your control. If you are struggling with your mental health, there is hope to change. A lot of mental illnesses will pass on their own, but that process can be checked by therapy and healing. If you want to improve your mental health, start here.


When we talk about someone's mental health, we're referring to their mental, behavioral, and emotional fitness level. It has repercussions on coping mechanisms, social interactions, and decision-making.

When it comes to mental health concepts, the World Health Organization defines "peak" as more than merely the absence of symptoms. Maintaining a state of health and happiness under adverse circumstances requires coping adeptly.

Listen without passing judgment and reach to a mental health therapist who can help you when required.

Frequently Asked Questions

Finding the right therapist for treating mental health issues can be daunting at times. You can always find the right therapist who is specially certified and licensed in your state from various online platforms. Lifebulb therapy service providers constitute the best certified professional experts who can assist you in the right direction towards building a healthy and quality life. We provide both in-person and virtual therapy in Charlottesville, Toms River, Edison, Alexandria and Cherry Hill.

The definition of mental health although not properly mentioned it is understood to be something most important for every individual. Our mental health includes all aspects of our physical, psychological, emotional, and social wellbeing. It affects our attitudes, feelings, and actions. Additionally, it influences how we respond to stress, interact with others, and make good decisions. Every period of life, from childhood and adolescence to maturity, is vital for mental health.

What is mental health issues is a question that can be heard now more than ever. With the rising number of cases on a daily basis talking about what does mental health looks like and what mental therapy in general has become the need of the hour. A broad range of mental health conditions that impact your emotions, thinking, and behavior—are referred to as mental illnesses, sometimes known as mental health disorders. Depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and compulsive behaviors are a few examples of mental illnesses. At present as per statistical reports nearly 10 million people are diagnosed with mental health issues. And the most common of them all is anxiety disorder. This report proves that understanding mental health by asking questions like what does mental health mean, or whats mental health or what are the mental health concepts is crucial now more than ever. Because if we do not have a sound understanding of keeping our mental health in check then it will not be late before we end up locked under stress and anxiety issues.

Psychotherapy is often regarded as the most effective method for addressing mental health problems. It is typically the  therapeutic treatment of mental illness by a qualified mental health professional. Psychotherapy examines ideas, emotions, and actions with the goal of enhancing a person's wellbeing. 

Psychotherapy is often regarded as the most effective method for addressing mental health problems. It is typically the  therapeutic treatment of mental illness by a qualified mental health professional. Psychotherapy examines ideas, emotions, and actions with the goal of enhancing a person's wellbeing. 

The most commonly used therapy methods are Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) , dialectical behavioral therapy(DBT) and psychodynamic therapy. Amongst the three types, CBT is the most widely used therapeutic approach for various mental health issues including anxiety.

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