We always look out for the people we love—parents, partners, children, friends, and siblings. We take care of them when they fall in and take them to the hospital if they get hurt. So why not look out for their mental health as well? Read the blog ahead to know how to do that.
Some signs to look out for are your loved one feeling sad or low. They could show confused thinking patterns, less concentration, and extreme mood changes; some could withdraw from social situations. Physical symptoms include low energy or always tiredness, sleeping issues, inability to deal with problems, excess alcohol and drug use, changed eating habits, violent behaviour and suicidal thinking.
If you consistently see these signs in a loved one, try to talk about them. Ask what has happened and what the issue is. To do a simple checkup, these are a few tips:
Look for the signs mentioned above. Observe their behaviour.
Ask basic questions like how they are feeling.
Listen to them carefully and patiently. Active listening is essential.
Do not compare the issue with yourself or others.
Offer encouragement and support.
Ask them if you can help in any way.
Have an open and honest discussion about your concerns.
Don’t judge them.
Bring this topic up only when you think it’s a good time to talk and when both of you are a bit relaxed and have time.
If you think they might harm themselves or are exhausting themselves with their thoughts, seek professional help.
If you observe any of the mentioned signs and feel concerned about your loved one’s mental health, then suggest therapy. Motivate that person to speak to a professional and seek help. Take care of your loved one.
Have you ever wondered why your child is irritated all the time or avoiding school daily? Did you know that children can also develop the same mental health conditions as adults? Depression, anxiety, immense anger and stress, to name a few. But these issues go easily unnoticed by paediatricians, teachers or even parents. It’s no one’s fault because children tend to show some abnormal behavioural signs at the beginning of everything and it’s pretty common. If these signs keep occurring for a long time or their severity increases, then it requires attention and professional help. If they go unnoticed or are neglected by the adult, it can become a more severe problem later. Early detection and good treatment will lead to better outcomes.
How do we know if the child faces some mental or psychological issues? Here are some warning signs:
Avoiding social situations
Drastic mood change
Difficulty in sleeping
If you feel something is off with your child, you can also consult your child’s health care provider and talk to the teacher or close friends and relatives. You can also speak to a counsellor or therapist. There is also a mental health checklist for kids available online or at the counselling centres. These checklists consist of a rating scale to tick the options you feel are correct regarding your child. This checklist will find the issue and also provide the proper counselling required.
A few essential tips are providing less screen time and more play time, more sleep, adequate exercise, healthy food and learning parenting tips to handle such situations.
Take care of your child’s mental health and your mental health too.
Write to us if you feel you need therapy or if someone you know does.
Emotional eating is often one of the ways used to deal with feelings. One tends to eat a lot when emotional. Food is found to be comforting in these circumstances. Everyone over eats sometimes, but when this happens a lot without even realising it, it’s called emotional eating. How you feel can also make you lose your appetite. This can occur due to various reasons like work stress, financial worries, health issues, relationship struggles, educational problems, family dynamics, boredom, depression and more. Positive emotions are also associated with emotional eating like, topping the class or winning the competition. But most of the times it is related to negative emotions. Food is believed to be a way to fill that void (emotions) and create a false feeling of “wholeness.” The food eaten at this time is generally high on calories, sweet and fatty foods. A few examples are having a pint of ice cream when feeling low, ordering pizza when lonely, having fries when stressed, eating donuts when sad, and having lots of cookies before an exam.
Here are a few signs of emotional eating. One craves for certain food items, binge eat, feel guilty about it later on, feel nauseas, gain weight which can lead to weight related health issues. This can all later lead on to obesity, heart diseases, lethargy, etc.
Analyze yourself if you feel you are eating emotionally. Ask questions to yourself like “Have I been eating larger portions than usual? Do I eat at unusual times? Do a feel a loss of control around food? Has there recently been a big jump in my weight?” If your answers are positive for these questions, then here are a few tips to get back on track:
Maintain a food diary and write down what and when and how much do you eat.
Take a nutritionists help for diet plans.
Manage your stress in other ways like exercise, hobbies, meditation, etc. so that it doesn’t lead to emotional eating.
Fight boredom by doing something productive or interesting instead eating just to pass time.
Check if you are really hungry before eating.
Keep healthy snacks in your cabinets instead of junk food.
Distract yourself when you feel like eating abruptly. Do something different.
Try not to tempt yourself.
Write down your emotions and what you feel.
Find the root cause of this emotional eating.
Get support/help if necessary. Therapists will go down to the main issue and help you with coping strategies as well.
Emotional eating is fine if done rarely, but it’s harmful if done regularly. So if you think you are an emotional eater seek help and get back on track.
People undergo therapy to bring about desired changes in themselves because therapy is designed in such a manner that it is able to achieve certain desired outcomes in the concerned patients. Achievement of these outcomes depends on various factors and one of them is the client’s therapeutic compliance. The client’s therapeutic compliance includes the patient’s compliance with medication, diet, exercise or lifestyle changes. Nevertheless, there are various factors that affect the client’s therapeutic compliance.
Factors Affecting the Client’s Therapeutic Compliance
There are factors that contribute to the client’s therapeutic non-compliance. Other similar terms that can be used in sync with therapeutic compliance can be adherence to therapy, concordance to therapy, and others.
Lack of consistency between an individual’s health-seeking or maintenance behaviour and recommendations given by healthcare professionals.
Compliance of patients to medicine rules in proximity to the time of clinic appointments.
Lack of consistency in a patient to continue the therapy till the issue gets resolved.
Lack of capacity to build trust in the therapist and discontinuing therapy too soon.
Demographic factors like age, gender education, marriage status, etc of the patient.
Set of acquired beliefs, values, motivation, and attitude in a client.
Substance abuse like tobacco smoking or alcohol consumption.
Method of administration.
Level of complexity in treatment.
The lasting period of treatment.
The side effects of medication (if any).
Amount of behavioural change required at the end of the therapy.
Absence of accessibility to the therapist.
Complications in filling the prescriptions.
Unsatisfied clinic visits or sessions.
Charges of sessions and income.
Nature of social support.
Lack of ability to take a break from work.
The severity of the problem.
Elderly people fail to become compliant with the therapy because they are usually equipped with problems like vision, hearing, and memory that create difficulties for them to follow instructions.
On the other hand, middle-aged people give priority to other things in life than the prescription given by the therapist, due to commitment to work, they are not able to make the appointments.
Young children are dependent on their parents and guardians to attend sessions and disagreement or rebellious attitudes with them will affect their therapeutic compliance.
Set of Acquired Beliefs, Values, Motivation, and Attitude in a Client
While some patients think that their problem is untreatable, some have religious beliefs and some are worried about the declining effect of medication with time. The clients who lack the motivation to modify their behaviour and follow medications become non-compliant with time. Some clients, especially adolescents carry a negative attitude with themselves that they are not normal like their friends, leading to an absence of compliance in therapy.
The Lasting Period of Treatment
Acute illness comes with the client’s therapeutic compliance and vice versa. This is because the patient’s attitude of denying the therapy reduces with short duration of treatment.
Absence of Accessibility to The Therapist
Patients who give more importance to their work and other things, often become non-compliant. The reason for the same can be the travelling distance between his residence and the clinic. If the therapist is easily accessible to the patient, then he can regularly attend sessions and give desired outcomes.
Nature of Social Support
Social and emotional support from friends, family or healthcare providers contributes to the willingness of an individual to take therapy till results are attained. This is because social support helps to remove negative thoughts from the client’s mind and become motivated and encouraged to complete the therapy.
The client’s therapeutic compliance is his behaviour towards taking medication, following diet alterations or implementing lifestyle changes. As mentioned above, there can be various types of client therapeutic non-compliance and factors contributing to the same. The main concern is that client’s therapeutic compliance and non-compliance play a major role in achieving the desired outcomes at the end of therapy.
Mental health concerns affect all age groups throughout the world. Many individuals who have never been to a therapist have curiosity and certainly have many questions like; Will he read my mind? What will I say when I go to a therapist? What if someone else comes to know about my problems? Will I have to talk about my childhood all the time?
What is Therapy?
Therapy is also known as ‘Psychotherapy’. It is a form of treatment that aims at relieving] emotional distress and mental problems. A trained professional who listens and guides the client to resolve his/her issues conducts therapy.
Art therapy, talk therapy, psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy are some of the different types of therapy.
Before a therapy session is booked, some therapists ask the client to fill up a ‘client intake form’ that has the basic background information of the client. It could also include details about how long the session will last, confidentiality and session fee.
Therapy sessions are professionally structured meetings between a trained therapist and a client.
The therapist will do some rapport-building exercises. This provides a supportive and comfortable environment where the client talks openly and the therapist actively listens to the client without any judgments or criticism and with a positive approach.
Therapists might take notes while listening to the client during the session.
The therapist will ask the client to share – traumatic experiences, feelings and incidents.
Initially, most therapies begin with ‘talk therapy’ where the therapist asks the client questions to understand their struggles and establish a therapy goal.
A therapy session is not like a magic wand. It does not solve the client’s problems but instead, the therapist helps and leads the client to possible solutions and coping strategies.
The counselling psychologist might refer you to a clinical psychologist for psychological tests or may refer the client to a psychiatrist if needed.
At the end of each session, the therapist might give you a mental health activity before the beginning of the next session. These activities help the therapist analyse the client’s progress.
Do seek professional help if needed.
Be honest with your therapist.
Avoid missing the scheduled sessions.
Complete the mental health activities assigned by the therapist.
Change your therapist if you feel their approach isn’t working for you.