Most people do not equate mental health checkups with physical health checkups. The mind and body are connected and function best when you look after your overall well-being. Still, you might neglect your mental health needs and your physical health needs because you are not comfortable seeing your family physician.
While routine physical examinations can seem intimidating, seeking help from a psychologist or psychiatrist for a mental health assessment can be far more challenging because of the negative connotations that are falsely attached to it. Therefore, it is crucial to educate yourself on the importance of getting a mental health checkup. Let’s look at what a mental health checkup is and how it can benefit your overall well-being.
Seeking Professional Care
Seeking treatment from a psychologist or psychiatrist can help you better understand your brain function. While each professional has a background in studying the brain, psychiatrists are also medical doctors who can legally prescribe medications. Among the many benefits of seeking care from either of these professionals is that they offer tools and practices that help you develop your emotional growth. Such growth is necessary to maintain a healthy range of emotions.
If you are constantly defaulting to negative emotions such as anger or depression, these could be signs that your brain is under more stress than you think. Therefore, when these signs occur, it is a good indication to seek professional care. By undergoing a personal examination of your life, experiences, relationships, and feelings, you better understand yourself and others around you.
Additionally, taking time to explore your emotions in this way will help reduce feelings of frustration or depression that arise from various sources. It will also help you manage your feelings more competently and therefore lead to more satisfying experiences.
Mental Health Disorders Are Common
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, nearly 51.5 million adults in the U.S. ages 18 and older experience some mental illness. Of those, 16.3 percent are males. Further, most have a disorder that constrains at least one major life activity. Additionally, about 7.1 percent of adults undergo at least one major episode of depression annually, and 18 percent experience issues related to anxiety.
It is essential to seek care if you are experiencing stress, anxiety, or depression that lasts for more than a few days. Further experiencing regular episodes is also a clear indication that your brain is signaling it needs help. Think of it as a nagging physical injury. If a region of your body were in pain for more than a few days, you would likely seek professional care. However, it is always unhealthy for both the mind and body to remedy discomfort with substances.
Mental Health Check-ups vs. Physical Check-ups
If mental health issues go untreated, they can lead to substance use, deterioration in relationships, risky behaviors, and hospitalization. If you allow your symptoms to worsen, you could be facing an extended recovery.
Additionally, mental health checkups should proceed with the same regularity as a physical checkup. However, this does not suggest that you need to schedule a visit with a psychiatrist or psychologist every six months, or the same as other doctor visits. However, it does mean that any emotional issues like depression, stress, or anxiety should be brought up at a physical exam and discussed with a physician for a referral.
What Is a Mental Health Assessment?
When you decide to address your mental health needs, you will undergo a psychiatric assessment. Depending on the urgency of your mental health needs, your options will vary if you have developed substance use dependency to combat your emotions. More often, an assessment is when a professional—like your doctor, psychologist, or psychiatrist—will help with finding the best diagnosis for any underlying mental disorder. The more honest you are with your therapist or doctor, the faster you can expect to receive a diagnosis. Only then can you begin an effective treatment plan tailored to meet your needs.
If you are struggling with addiction, you will benefit from seeking care at a professional treatment facility. Many treatment centers offer a refined assessment that includes looking into your health history, including family health, and examining the reasons and motivations behind why you are using substances to cope. Once you identify the root of your substance abuse and your triggers, you’ll learn new coping methods to help avoid relapse in the future. Treatment centers can also help you properly treat both your substance use and mental health disorders. So, if you are currently self-medicating and in need of help, a treatment facility is likely the best option for you.
Getting regular mental health evaluations can help you avoid further damage and any long-term effects from trying to manage your health needs on your own. You should not try to mend a broken bone without professional medical help, and you should not try to heal your emotions with substances. If you are currently in need of help, then the time to reach out is now. At Choice House, we help men develop their deeper emotional ranges. We also utilize the surrounding Boulder, Colorado treatment centers to find you the best detox centers to help you gain lasting sobriety. Our goal is to provide you with the best education and resources needed to manage your mental health and substance use disorders. We also offer group, individual, and family therapy to help you continue to become more comfortable and educated about your health needs. Find out more and call us at Choice House today at (720) 577-4422.