Thursday, October 24, 2013

Physical Health vs. Mental Health: There Should Be No Difference

I'm going to keep this brief and to the point. Why do we, as a society, treat physical ailments one way and then stigmatize all mental disorders (Depression, Anxiety, Bi-Polar, Schizophrenia, OCD, etc.) under a separate category of "Mental Health"?

With all that we have learned about the brain during this past decade, we know now that all of these disorders have to do with chemical imbalances in the brain. Isn't the brain part of the human body? Isn't it, in fact, the most important organ of the body? It controls all of our bodily functions. That's why a person isn't really dead until he's "brain dead."

Even PMDD (Pre-Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder) is now classified as a mental disorder, even though you'd think it has more to do with your hormones than anything up in your brain...but then, I guess our brains control hormone levels, as well.

What is the difference, anyway, between a diabetic, who needs regular insulin shots to keep his/her blood sugar stabilized, and a person with OCD, who needs regular medication to keep his/her seratonin and dopamine levels stabilized?

Nothing. No difference in my opinion. It's all physical. Let's get over the "mental"block we have about these things.

So the next time someone has the guts to admit that they've been diagnosed with any of those disorders, reassure them, give them a pat on the back, show your support. Just don't give them the look that says, "Yeah,'s all in your mind. Get over it, already."

It's not in their imagination, it's in their brain.

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