About one out of every five adults in the United States suffers from anxiety. Almost as many people deal with depression. The majority of people will go through a mental illness experience at some point in their lives. More and more people are receiving diagnoses for mental illness challenges. As a result, there are also more people who want to learn how to help loved ones struggling with mental illness.
Without mutual understanding, mental illness can lead to friction in relationships. By learning more about mental illness management, it is possible to improve relationships with those who are working through mental illness challenges. So what can you do to help someone dealing with a mental illness? These tips will help you get started!
Learn to Recognize the Signs of Mental Illness
The more you understand the symptoms of the mental illness of your loved one, the better you will be able to adjust your behavior in helpful ways. It is important to understand the difference between general symptoms and specific symptoms. For example, if someone is dealing with depression, it can help to know how they might change their sleep schedule or eating behaviors. But it is also essential to learn to recognize the unique symptoms that a mental illness causes in your loved one. For instance, you might notice that your loved one responds to their mental health issues by procrastinating.
Whatever the situation, it is vital to learn which aspects of your loved one’s behavior are connected to their mental illness. This can also help you to understand which things are not signs of illness. One thing that people struggle with when it comes to mental illness is knowing when it makes sense to be firm. When you understand which aspects of their behavior are not connected to their illness, you can better understand what to expect from your loved one.
Seek Out Experience
When learning how to help your loved one with a mental illness, consider speaking with relatives and friends about their experiences. People with firsthand experience understand the condition and can share their unique perspectives. Speaking with someone is a great way to gain insight into what it’s like to experience mental health issues and how to support someone struggling or going through treatment.
Consider reaching out to talk with someone even if you are still determining exactly what you want to learn. Everyone’s experiences are different, but learning from someone who has experienced mental health issues can provide insight.
Learn Activities for Improving Mental Health
There are many things that people can do in the course of their everyday lives to help manage their mental illnesses. By learning about these things, you can help encourage your loved one to engage in hopeful activities at appropriate times. Some people benefit from meditating when they experience serious symptoms of their mental illness. If this technique helps your loved one, then you should learn about meditation yourself.
Learn About Mental Health Treatment
It can also help to learn about the professional treatment that your loved one receives. If your loved one sees a therapist, you might want to learn about their therapeutic technique. You should make a point of speaking with your loved one about their therapeutic sessions so that you can stay on the same page.
If your loved one is using a medication, you should also learn about their medication. Understanding this treatment can help your loved one feel supported. Being a supportive and knowledgeable source means they have someone they can turn to when they need help.
Track Your Own Mental Health Issues
Many people do not realize that everyone deals with mental challenges of one kind or another. Some people have significant enough problems that we consider them to have a mental illness, but everyone has some degree of mental health issues.
The mental illness of your loved one can provide an opportunity for you to learn to understand them and yourself better. As you learn about your own challenges and how to manage them, you may also be able to share insights with your loved one, but you can appreciate what your loved one is experiencing.
Understand How to Help a Loved One With a Mental Illness
You can show a loved one with a mental illness that you care by learning about how to help them manage it. In many cases, friction and stress in a relationship decrease when everyone involved understands more about any present mental health issues. In the long run, learning about how to manage illness can improve the health of your loved one as well as your own. To learn more about how to help a loved one with a mental illness, reach out and get in touch with us here!