Much research has shown that mental and physical health are linked; this is why your muscles may tense or you may experience a prolonged headache because you’re feeling stressed. A 2018 review of the literature published in Psychiatric Services denoted that mental illness, general medical comorbidity, and premature mortality are greatly affected by risk factors such as tobacco use, substance use, poor diet, and lack of physical activity. Thus, reputable treatment programs offer several effective components to addressing these concerns: medical and psychological interventions, nutrition assessment and management, and physical fitness exercises.
There are many ways in which mental illness affects one’s physical health:
- Symptoms of a mental illness may make it more difficult to exercise, eat nutritiously or give up unhealthy habits such as smoking
- Certain medications for mental illness can cause side effects that create physical health problems
- Some treatment centers only focus on a person’s mental illness, causing their physical health to decline
- Genetic factors can play a significant role in a person’s susceptibility to developing either a mental illness or physical health issues
Psychiatry assists with these issues by helping a person take steps towards their overall health and well-being – steps they otherwise may not have been aware of or steps they may have felt uncomfortable taking initially. With the help of a reputable psychiatrist, a person can be on their way towards living a happier, healthier, more manageable life. For example, the following are some topics you may discuss with a psychiatrist or therapist that could benefit both your mental and physical health:
- Setting a goal to walk 20 minutes each day
- Discussing making a meal plan for the week
- Making the choice to drink water each day
The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified poor mental health as a risk factor for chronic physical conditions, as those with chronic physical conditions are at risk for developing poor mental health. If you are struggling with both a mental illness and an addiction, act now by finding a dual-diagnosis program; this is a program that will work with both concerns, as well as promoting the health of your overall mind, body, and spirit. Don’t wait any longer – seek the help you need today.
Avalon Malibu is a world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at 888-958-7511 for a consultation. It’s never too late, and there are people here ready to help you.