The terms “psychological” and “mental” are generally used interchangeably to describe similar conditions that interfere with the way a person functions. However, these terms are often perceived differently and may affect how an individual with such problems is treated. Unlike physical illnesses, mental and psychological disorders are often misunderstood, hugely neglected, and in some cases difficult to diagnose.
Mental illness is a medical condition that impacts a person’s ability to think, feel, and act properly. Mental problems are typically caused by internal factors such as genetics, brain structure, chemical imbalances, or abnormal functioning of neurotransmitters. Medications can be quite helpful for some mental disorders. However, the term “mental illness” is often stigmatized and associated with insanity, crime or violence. Common mental illnesses include bi-polar disease (manic depression), schizophrenia, and even ADHD.
Psychological disorders are typically a result of external factors such as one’s environment, family history, social circumstances, stress or trauma. For example, a traumatic event experienced in childhood such as mistreatment, violence, or abuse can cause lasting damage and affect adult life. Psychological disorders are divided into many different categories such as mood, anxiety, and eating disorders. Depressions, phobias, neuroses, and obsessive behaviors also fall into this category. Treatment frequently involves psychotherapy to work on behaviors and thought processes.
The first step in the treatment of mental and psychological disorders is recognizing that a problem exists. These conditions can be identified based on experience and observation of various symptoms that culminate in a psychiatric diagnosis. Contrary to the popular belief that mental disorders are rare, depression alone affects about 400 million people in the world. This infographic is an attempt to put forward the most common psychological disorders and give a glimpse of how it feels to suffer from them.
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