The brain is a complex piece of organic machinery. It is the signal processor that takes in information from literally millions of nerves and processes everything so we can enjoy the world around us.
When it comes to identifying what mental health truly is, it all centers ultimately in how well the brain functions and processes information for our benefit. When the brain ceases to do its job in the way it was intended, this can lead to a wide variety of mental health problems. However, to truly grasp what mental health is, it is important to examine what the brain does in greater detail.
To be aware is to have the capacity to acknowledge what is happening around us and to us. This means all our senses – vision, hearing, sense of smell, sense of taste, touch and varying degrees of pain and temperature sensation – are all intact. If any of these senses is overly diminished or hyper-stimulated, this can have a profound effect on how well our brain interprets our experiences in relation to the world around us.
While some sensory loss or hypersensitivity is more impairing than others, long-term exposure to such an experience may affect how we perceive reality. The resultant behavioral patterns that follow may indicate a decline in mental health, if the experience is overly traumatic and the individual is unable to cope with how their awareness is rendered by their own brain. In this respect, mental health involves having a grip on awareness that does not create too much stress to the human body for which to cope.
Beyond matters of awareness exists the fact that the human body is dependent on vitamins, minerals and other substances that are derived from our diet. These chemicals are sometimes essential for optimal mental functioning.
When the body and the brain fail to get certain nutrients, this can sometimes result in mild to severe mental disorders. For example, many patients with mental disorders have a condition known as Niacin dependence.
Essentially, this means that their state of mental health is dependent on the regular intake of vitamin B3. People who are generally nervous may also find that to achieve sound mental health, they are in need of a wider complement of B-vitamins.
Probiotics are often shown to improve some mental conditions as well, suggesting that mental health is certainly a subject that involves dietary factors to ensure that our mental health remains intact. In some cases, medication may be necessary to establish the conditions for optimal mental health.
The Stress Angle
Another way to identify mental health comes from our ability to cope with stress. Coping with stress is perhaps one of the most important functions of the human mind. For this reason, it is essential for people to know how to regulate stress so as not to create conditions of chronic anxiety. Exercise, breathing and various forms of recreation are thus part of establishing a foundation for good mental health.
Consult the Professionals
At Cady Wellness Institute in Newburgh, we offer a variety of options for addressing mental health issues, ranging from medications and hormone therapy to counseling services and insight-oriented psychotherapy. Contact us today to schedule your appointment to learn.