Common Mental Health Disorders

Mental disorders are mental health illnesses that can hold a variety of symptoms depending on the disorder. Some of the more common disorders are centered around anxiety and depression. People with mental health disorders often have abnormal thoughts and emotions which influence their behaviour and often make it challenging to go about their daily lives. If left untreated, mental health disorders can be very debilitating. However, with treatment (possibly medications and psychotherapy) they are treatable.

Common Disorders:

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Disorder
  • Major Depressive Disorder
  • Expressive and Receptive Language Disorder
  • Oppositional Defiant Disorder
  • Pervasive Development Disorder
  • Dyslexia
  • Schizophrenia
  • Tourette’s

Other Disorders:

  • Conduct Disorder
  • Conversion Disorder
  • Delusional Disorder
  • Dissociative Disorder
  • Dissociative Identity Disorder
  • Schizophreniform Disorder
  • Trichotillomania

Signs & Symptoms of Mental Health Disorders

Symptoms and warning signs can vary depending on the disorder, but here are some common symptoms when dealing with mental illness:

Emotional symptoms:

  • Sadness
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Feeling fear or worry
  • Extreme feelings of guilt
  • Delusions or hallucinations
  • Mood swings
  • Inability to cope with stress
  • Feeling isolated
  • Out of control anger
  • Violence
  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Withdrawal from friends
  • Withdrawal from activities

Physical symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Paranoia
  • Alcohol or drug abuse
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Changes in libido
  • Digestive issues
  • Aches and pains
  • Headaches

When is it time to get help?

If you are experiencing the signs and symptoms of mental illness, it’s important to seek help. You may require medication and therapy. If you are having thoughts of suicide or repeated thoughts of death and dying – we can help. If you, or someone you know is considering suicide, for immediate help outside of our office hours, throughout Alberta, please call 211 or one of the following distress lines:

Edmonton:  The Crisis Centre call 780 482 HELP (4357)
Greater Edmonton region: Rural Distress Line at 1-800-232-7288.
Calgary: 403 266 HELP (4357)

Treatment methods for common disorders

Depending on your disorder, there are many proven effective therapeutic methods that will help you to you to lead a fulfilling life. They include:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based approach to treatment that focuses on how your thoughts, emotions and beliefs influence your behaviour and how you perceive yourself, others and the world. CBT has been shown to be effective in dealing with anxiety because it helps you to change those negative thoughts, feelings, emotions and projections on a subject matter or circumstance and help you to learn more effective ways of dealing with your anxiety. This approach uses sound techniques to slow down, halt and eliminate your own learned reactions. Ultimately, CBT deals with those circumstances and events that you’re aware of, rather than dealing with circumstances and events relating to your unconscious. Through a sound therapeutic process, you’ll learn to respond differently to issues and circumstances, and you’ll learn healthy coping mechanisms.
  • Mindfulness Therapy combines cognitive behaviour therapy with meditation techniques. It was originally used to treat depression, it has shown to be effective in the treatment of other conditions as well, such as addictions, and other mental health concerns. Clients use mindfulness techniques to interrupt thoughts and automatic body processes (sleep disturbances, for example). This type of therapy helps clients to see that their thoughts can become their reality and they are taught how to disengage from negative thoughts and thought patterns.
  • Reality Therapy Reality therapy generally believes that individuals choose their behaviour and as a result, are responsible for not only what they are doing, but also how they think and feel. The ultimate goal of reality therapy is to provide the necessary support of conditions to help clients develop the psychological strength to evaluate their own behaviour and acquire more effective behaviour on the under the umbrella of a warm, accepting counselling environment. One of the key important beliefs is that our behaviour is not caused by the environmental factors, but rather by our internal forces and choice, ultimately leading to the key focus of accountability within ourselves.
  • Solution-focused Therapy views people as inherently strong and resilient, and capable of creating change and discovering solutions to their everyday problems. People are thought to know what they want and need in life and are experts in their own lives. Solution-focused therapy views problems as normal life-cycle complications that become overwhelming for people and seem to be always happening. Although it’s important to clarify the problem, solution-focused therapists do not think it is necessary to know what caused the problem to find solutions or to make things better.

What will I get out of treatment with Insight Psychological?

Mental health disorders can have a very negative affect on your life – but they can be controlled with the proper support. Insight’s therapists can provide that support using a treatment method that works best for you. Mental health disorders are very common – you are not alone, and you don’t have to suffer.