Mental Health

Mental health needs to be taken seriously. It is bad enough that people are subjected to abuse, but the consequences of that abuse can also prove to be ongoing long after you have left the abuser. I am only going to touch on a few, but it is not unusual to see any of the following diagnosis in survivors from abuse:

MAJOR DEPRESSION DISORDER is also known as recurrent depressive disorder, clinical depression, and unipolar depression or disorder.

This is a mental disorder that has low mood, low self esteem, loss of interest or pleasure in normally enjoyable activities. This is a disabling condition that can affect all parts of life. People may ruminate over feelings of worthlessness, innappropriate thoughts of guilt or regret, worthlessness, helplessness, hopelessness, and self hatred.

GENERALIZED ANXIETY DISORDER is a common chronic disorder characterized by long lasting anxiety that is not focused on one object or situation. People who suffer from this experience non specific fear and worry and become overly concerned with everyday matters.

OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER is a type of anxiety disorder primarily characterized by repetitive obsessions (distressing, persistent, and intrusive thoughts or images) and compulsions (urges to perform specific acts or rituals). The OCD thought pattern may be likened to superstitions insofar as it involves a belief in a causative relationship where, in reality, one does not exist. Often the process is entirely illogical; for example, the compulsion of walking in a certain pattern may be employed to alleviate the obsession of impending harm. And in many cases, the compulsion is entirely inexplicable, simply an urge to complete a ritual triggered by nervousness.

In a slight minority of cases, sufferers of OCD may only experience obsessions, with no overt compulsions; a much smaller number of sufferers experience only compulsions.

POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder which results from a traumatic experience. Post-traumatic stress can result from an extreme situation, such as combat, natural disaster, rape, hostage situations, more serious kinds of child abuse, or even a serious accident. It can also result from long term (chronic) exposure to a severe stressor, for example soldiers who endure individual battles but cannot cope with continuous combat. Common symptoms include hypervigilance, flashbacks, avoidant behaviors, anxiety, anger and depression.

BIPOLAR or MANIC DEPRESSIVE DISORDER (also referred to as bipolar affective disorder or manic depression) is a psychiatric diagnosis that describes a category of mood disorders defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated energy levels, cognition, and mood and one or more depressive episodes. The elevated moods are clinically referred to as mania or, if milder, hypomania. Individuals who experience manic episodes also commonly experience depressive episodes or symptoms, or mixed episodes in which features of both mania and depression are present at the same time. These episodes are usually separated by periods of "normal" mood, but in some individuals, depression and mania may rapidly alternate, known as rapid cycling. Extreme manic episodes can sometimes lead to psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations. The disorder has been subdivided into bipolar I, bipolar II, cyclothymia, and other types, based on the nature and severity of mood episodes experienced; the range is often described as the bipolar spectrum.

SCHITZIPHRENIA is a mental disorder characterized by abnormalities in the perception or expression of reality. It most commonly manifests as auditory hallucinations, paranoid or bizarre delusions, or disorganized speech and thinking with significant social or occupational dysfunction.

I have been blessed to work with many wonderful women who have suffered from one or more mental health condition's listed above. How can your mental health not suffer from at least one of the above mentioned after being traumatized from abuse? The important thing is to take care of your mental health now that it is safe to do so. Healthy repetitive thoughts along with counseling, and you can feel better.

I suffered from PTSD when I was a young mother getting away from the abuse. At work recently my PTSD was triggered by a loud sound I was not expecting that came from behind me. I was triggered, definetly. My trauma began 20 years ago, so to see my body's response shocked me. The PTSD showed itself. :)

Mental Health In The Abuse

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