How does exercise impact mental health, and how can it improve a patient’s mental health?
Exercise plays a significant role in our general mental health. It improves and alleviates anxiety, stress, depression and boosts your mood due to the release of healthy endorphins. Furthermore, regular exercise also improves self-esteem, a crucial psychological benefit. When you combine regular exercise with a healthy diet, the benefits increase even more. A Mediterranean diet, for instance, contains nutritional vitamins and improves cognitive function. In a study conducted by Medical News Today, researchers found that a high intake of vegetables and a low intake of meat and alcohol lowers the chances of developing depression or severe anxiety symptoms.
Is there a particular age group predisposed to mental health disorders?
Yes, there certainly is. In several low to middle-income countries, it was found that mental health has had a significant impact on the younger generation. Statistics also indicate that women are more susceptible to developing symptoms of anxiety and depression, more so than men. Looking back at the past two years, we see that genetics and hereditary factors also play a role. Another element of mental health that we see has an impact is a long-term post-Covid syndrome. After a person has had Covid, they can still be presented with lingering symptoms such as insomnia, ultimately impacting their mental health.
What is the impact on children of parents struggling with mental health?
Several parents with mental health difficulties can give their children love and care without negatively affecting them. Sometimes these parents require support from family members, friends or health care professionals. In some cases, severe mental health disorders in parents may lead to parental issues such as neglecting the child or other factors. It is essential to understand that not all children are affected by their parent’s mental health conditions. In the interview, Dr Melissa, who specialises in pregnancy and post-natal Psychiatry, says that she sees the impact of a mother struggling with depression and its effect on the child in her line of work.
In some cases, where post-natal depression is at play, a mother’s normal connection with their newborn child can be fragmented. We did a separate article on post-natal depression and its effects that you can read on our website. Dr Melissa did a separate interview on Ontbyt sake that you can also watch in this article.
Tips on building better mental health today
Becoming resilient and building a better mental health state starts with taking action. Your mental health influences how you feel, think and behave in your daily life. Being mentally healthy is more than being free of mental health conditions. This year everyone should prioritise their mental health to achieve or restore their quality of life.
Mentally healthy people are:
- Content with their environment or themselves
- They can manage stress and anxiety in a healthy manner
- They have a sense of purpose in personal relationships and ordinary daily activities
- They are well balanced in their everyday life
- Higher self-esteem and confidence
- The ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships at work and in their personal lives outside of work
Every patient and their condition are unique, so each treatment plan is uniquely tailored to their needs. Treatment starts with a comprehensive evaluation. The psychiatrist will then diagnose and possibly run tests to ensure all aspects are carefully considered. Your doctor will then refer you to a specialist to receive the necessary treatment.
ZwavelStream clinic is situated in the Bronberg area of Pretoria east. Here you can receive treatment in an entirely de-stigmatised environment while you enjoy nature’s beauty. ZwavelStream clinic has gone above and beyond to create a healthy environment to restore our patient’s mental health. Mental illness is often met with fear and misunderstanding, but it uniquely touches everyone.
We aim to break down the stigma surrounding mental illness by equipping patients and their families and friends with education, information, and the tools to help them lead productive and fulfilling lives. Our multidisciplinary network is based on-site and provides the support and treatments needed to recover.
We address mental illness holistically and without any judgment whatsoever, with experienced specialists dedicated to the different forms of mental health. Get in touch if you suspect that you or a loved one might require the help of a mental health specialist.