Mental illnesses are health conditions involving changes in emotion, thinking and behavior. The changes can be a combination of each condition. These conditions can be occasional or chronic and can alter someone’s ability to function daily during social, work and family activities.
There are several types of mental illness including but not limited to:

  • Anxiety Disorder
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Behavioral Disorder
  • Depression
  • Mood Disorders
  • Eating Disorders
  • Personality Disorders
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Schizophrenia

It can be hard to identify if someone is dealing with mental illness. Each illness has its own symptoms, but common signs of mental illness in adults and adolescents can include the following:

  • Eating or sleeping too much or too little
  • Pulling away from people and usual activities
  • Feeling numb or like nothing matters, helpless, or hopeless
  • Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried, or scared
  • Yelling or fighting with family and friends
  • Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
  • Thinking of harming yourself or others
  • Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work or school

Mental illness often goes untreated, because people who suffer do not know where to start. Talking to your primary care doctor or another health professional about mental health problems can begin the treatment process. They can help connect you with the right mental health services.

If you do not have a health professional who is able to assist you, use these resources to find help for yourself, your friends, your family, or your students. 

Mental Health Check Questions

  1. Have I been getting quality sleep with regular bedtimes and getting up times?
  2. Have I been isolating myself from others at work, friends, or family?
  3. Do I have more worries or anxiety than usual?  Maybe use a scale of 1-10.
  4. Have I lost interest in activities and pursuits that usually held my attention?
  5. Have I felt more sad than happy lately?
  6. Do I feel at ease with myself and my surroundings?
  7. Do I feel that my life is appropriately balanced between work, fun, friends, family, self-care, exercise, and other meaningful pursuits?
  8. Do I have trouble concentrating?
  9. Have I been experiencing significant mood swings, crying, or thoughts of suicide?
  10. Am I overly fatigued or tired at the end of the day?  How about at the end of the week?
  11. Have my appetite or eating habits changed in any way recently?