Hey lovelies,

It’s time for one of those very open and honest posts, which I seem to be doing more and more of.  I believe that I have suffered from Mental Health issues since I was a pre-teen.  Obviously it’s a difficult time for most people, if not everyone.  It is something which, for many years, has had a stigma attached to it, and now that more and more people are talking about it and their experiences people are beginning to realise that, it truly does impact a lot of people.  In fact, it is estimated that more than 1 in 3 people experience some form of mental health issues, with the most common being depression and anxiety.

Depression

I can honestly say that I cannot remember a time in my life when I wasn’t plagued by depression.  This doesn’t mean that I haven’t had happy times in my life – I really have.  But I can go right back to about 10 years old and can remember signs of the depression coming in.  Reading through the symptoms of depression it is quite eye opening to realise how many of them I had suffered from before I sought help, though saying that, I can still have many of the symptoms, especially on a bad day.

Psychological Symptoms (as from the NHS website:)

  • continuous low mood or sadness
  • feeling hopeless and helpless
  • having low self-esteem
  • feeling tearful
  • feeling guilt-ridden
  • feeling irritable and intolerant of others
  • having no motivation or interest in things
  • finding it difficult to make decisions
  • not getting any enjoyment out of life
  • feeling anxious or worried
  • having suicidal thoughts or thoughts of harming yourself

Physical Symptoms:

  • moving or speaking more slowly than usual
  • changes in appetite or weight (usually decreased, but sometimes increased)
  • constipation
  • unexplained aches and pains
  • lack of energy
  • low sex drive (loss of libido)
  • changes to your menstrual cycle
  • disturbed sleep – for example, finding it difficult to fall asleep at night or waking up very early in the morning

Social Symptoms:

  • not doing well at work
  • avoiding contact with friends and taking part in fewer social activities
  • neglecting your hobbies and interests
  • having difficulties in your home and family life

The NHS website also discusses the severity of depression and I guess this goes hand in hand with me saying that just because I have depression doesn’t mean I haven’t had happy moments.  Their advice is that it is really important to seek help from your GP, especially if you have experienced some of the symptoms for most of the day, every day for two weeks.  Along with depression I have recently (last 5 years or so) suffered terribly from anxiety and I have to say Anxiety is 100 times worse than the depression.  It has had a serious impact on my health.  It is definitely the reason why I have psoriasis, which in turn lead to my psoriatic arthritis, which of course has severe life changing aspects.  Has anyone ever suffered a panic attack?  My first one was horrifying.  And the subsequent ones were just as horrifying.  There are quite a few things in my life that lead to the anxiety but it’s the symptoms that are most difficult to cope with.

Anxiety

Again this is something which more and more people are beginning to suffer from, and similar to depression, it is something which affects women more than men.

Psychological Symptoms of GAD (General Anxiety Disorder) (Again from the NHS website:)

  • restlessness
  • a sense of dread
  • feeling constantly “on edge”
  • difficulty concentrating
  • irritability

Physical Symptoms:

Having both depression and anxiety it can truly be such a vicious cycle.  Want to go out and socialise with my friends but social depression rears it’s head.  As I said the panic attacks are horrendous but seeing the physical impact that this has had on me has truly been the worst thing.  I now have to deal with depression, anxiety and psoriatic arthritis.  But you know what helps?  My amazingly supportive family, those friends who will stand by me, bullet journalling, working on what I am grateful for, this blog, which helps me focus on the good things and constantly trying to work to improve myself and my mental health.  Does anyone else suffer from mental health issues? How do you cope with it?

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: