Mental illness refers to a wide range of disorders that affect mood, thinking, and behavior. For example:
- Anxiety disorders: including panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and phobias
- Mood disorders: including depression and bipolar disorder
- Psychotic disorders: including schizophrenia
- Impulse control disorders: including eating disorders
- Personality disorders: including paranoid personality disorder and borderline personality disorder
Some types are only occasional or situational, others are chronic.
- Family history
- Life experiences, such as stress or a history of abuse
- Chemical imbalances in the brain
- A traumatic brain injury
- A mother's exposure to viruses or toxic chemicals while pregnant
- Use of alcohol or recreational drugs
- Serious medical condition like cancer
- Feeling lonely or isolated
- Feeling sad or down
- Confused thinking or reduced ability to concentrate
- Excessive fears or worries, or extreme feelings of guilt
- Extreme mood changes of highs and lows
- Withdrawal from friends and activities
- Significant tiredness, low energy or problems sleeping
- Detachment from reality (delusions), paranoia or hallucinations
- Inability to cope with daily problems or stress
- Trouble understanding and relating to situations and to people
- Alcohol or drug abuse
- Major changes in eating habits
- Sex drive changes
- Excessive anger, hostility or violence
- Suicidal thinking
If you think you may hurt yourself or attempt suicide, call 911 immediately.
The steps to getting a diagnosis include
- A medical history
- A physical exam and possibly lab tests, if your provider thinks that other medical conditions could be causing your symptoms
- A psychological evaluation. You will answer questions about your thinking, feelings, and behaviors.
Treatment depends on which mental disorder you have and how serious it is. You and your provider will work on a treatment plan just for you. It usually involves some type of therapy. You may also take medicines. Some people also need social support and education on managing their condition.
In some cases, you may need more intensive treatment. You may need to go to a psychiatric hospital. In the hospital, you will get counseling, group discussions, and activities with mental health professionals and other patients.
Beacon Health Options works with GlobalHealth to arrange all the behavioral health aspects of your healthcare. Beacon provides care management programs, 24-hour clinical support services, valuable resources and the access to high-quality care that you need.
Beacon connects people to treatment that works. The comprehensive and personalized treatment plans offered by licensed clinicians help you achieve success in your treatment.
For questions about individual behavioral health providers (psychiatrists/therapists), or for information about behavioral health programs & facilities, please call the number on the back of your insurance card.
Managing Your Condition
- Follow your treatment plan.
- Take care of your physical health,
- Connect with family and friends.
- Avoid alcohol and drugs.
- Seek help when you need it.