Life’s priorities and the mental illnesses that follow along

18 years old. An official adult. You may think this is the end of growing up, but it really is just the beginning. Life decisions come into play full force, college, career, relationships. And interestingly enough at ages 18 to 29 you are still experiencing cognitive development. This is one of the many reasons why mental illnesses take shape at this stage of life, especially depression and anxiety.

The adolescent brain really isn’t fully developed until the age of 25 – car rental companies must have it right. Beforehand, the teen and young adult brain go through some dramatic and inevitable changes. The considerable neural growths happening at this time disrupts the brain, making it sensitive and vulnerable. This increased sensitivity is what causes this age group to be highly emotional and sensitive to peer pressure.

The most common mental health illnesses today are depression and anxiety. Often these two are co-occurring. Anxiety has a few different sub categories: panic disorder, social anxiety, phobias, and lastly general anxiety, while depression falls along a spectrum.

The symptoms of both depression and anxiety can seriously interfere with a person’s life from their daily activities, to work and school. Depression and anxiety can affect anyone, even an individual that seems to appear to “have it all.”

Anxiety can begin with one stressful situation. Without coping strategies, over time it can worsen into more generalized anxiety where every aspect of life brings anxious feelings. If not treated properly, these unhealthy thoughts and behaviors can lead to low self-esteem, social isolation, and even medical problems related to chronic stress.

Symptoms of anxiety and depression can be both mental and physical. Here are a few of the symptoms of anxiety to watch out for to address before they worsen:

  • Stomach Pain – indigestion or abdominal cramps.
  • Difficulty Breathing – choking sensations and hyperventilation
  • Negative Thoughts – including constantly anticipating danger or thinking that a catastrophe is around every corner
  • Constant Feelings of Worry – can result in irritability or physical shaking
  • Heart and Chest Pain
  • Low Appetite or Binge Eating
  • Insomnia

Some Symptoms of Depression include:

  • Difference in mood overall – guilt, hopelessness, loss of interest in hobbies or other pleasures, and general anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Excessive hunger, changes in appetite
  • Sleep disturbances such as insomnia or sleeping too much
  • Slowed thinking and body movements

There is no sure way to prevent mental illness. However, if you are experiencing some symptoms it is essential to address them before they become chronic. It can help first to learn how to control stress. Increasing resilience to stressful situations and boosting low self esteem is essential to keeping symptoms under control for both anxiety and depression.

Start by paying attention to the warning signs. Find possible triggers that cause your symptoms; it could be the simple act of a cup of caffeine, or skipping a meal leading to anxious thoughts or shakes. Negative thinking is also a big trigger in aspects of both mental illnesses as well. Learn to refocus your language and feelings to be more positive.

Most importantly take good care of yourself. Get adequate sleep, eat a nutritious diet, and get regular physical activity. The simplest actions of self love can do wonders for both your physical and mental health. Don’t be afraid to ask others for help if you are having trouble sleeping or even if you have questions about diet and physical activity.

While sleep, diet, and physical activity are the dominant factors for your health there are a few accessory steps towards great mental as well. Alcohol consumption is a depressant, therefore avoidance is key. Yoga and meditation can help wipe troubling thoughts from your brain for mental clarity, and some research has shown taking omega-3 supplements can help with depression. There are also many different brain clarity supplements as such as CuraMed Brain Function Mental Clarity Softgels. And lastly, have fun! Depression and anxiety can seem to consume your life causing you to stop engaging in activities you enjoy, don’t forget to love what you do and do what you love. It’s what life is for after all.


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