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Deb's Mental Health And Wellness Guide

"Face Yourself - Free Yourself"


(Updated 11/1/15)

I think one of the most important tools that should be given to the public is competent information regarding a brain disorder. I have included this page called DEFINITIONS, so that you will find topics and their explanations, all in one place.



~Let's Talk Facts Brochures~

The APA, Let’s Talk Facts brochure series is designed to improve mental health by promoting informed factual discussion of psychiatric disorders and their treatments. They were developed for educational purposes for the general public and provide answers to commonly asked questions on mental health issues and disorders.

Brochures may be ordered by visiting or calling 800-368-5777. The brochures are sold by topic in packets of 50. Discount pricing is available for bulk quantities of five or more packets. Please email [email protected] for more information. APA physician members receive a 20% discount.



Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer’s disease, which causes some of the brain’s cells to die, involves a part of the brain that controls memory. As it spreads to other parts of the brain, the illness affects a greater number of intellectual, emotional, and behavioral abilities.


Anxiety disorders are the most common of emotional disorders and affect more than 25 million Americans. Although each anxiety disorder has its own unique characteristics, most respond well to two types of treatment: psychotherapy and medications.

Autism Spectrum Disorders

Autism Spectrum Disorders are a range of complex developmental disorders that can cause problems with thinking, feeling, language, and the ability to relate to others. How autism disorders affect a person and the severity of symptoms are different in each person.

Bipolar Disorder

What is Bipolar Disorder? A brain disorder that causes shifts in a person’s mood, energy, and ability to function. Bipolar disorder is very treatable. A combination of psychotherapy and medication is optimal for managing the disorder over time.

Choosing a Psychiatrist

A psychiatrist is a medical physician who specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental health, including substance abuse and addiction. Psychiatrists are uniquely qualified to assess both the mental and physical aspects of psychological disturbance.

College Students and Alcohol Abuse

Students of legal age who consume alcohol should do so responsibly and in moderation. Unfortunately, many students engage in underage, risky drinking that could lead to long term alcohol problems. These patterns include binge drinking and heavy drinking on a regular basis. The health and social effects of alcohol misuse can be extremely serious and even life threatening both to the individual and to others.

Common Childhood Disorders

For parents, the key to handling mental disorders of children is to recognize the problem and seek appropriate treatment. These disorders have specific diagnostic criteria and treatments, and a complete evaluation by a mental health provider can determine whether a child needs help. Some of the mental disorders commonly seen in children are depression, ADHD, and conduct disorder.


Depression is a serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. Depression is never normal and always produces needless suffering. With proper diagnosis and treatment, the vast majority of people with depression will overcome it.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence is control by one partner over another in a dating, marital or live-in relationship. The means of control include physical, sexual, emotional and economic abuse, threats and isolation. While you cannot stop your partner’s abuse – only he or she can do that - you can find help and support for yourself.

Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are illnesses in which the victims suffer severe disturbances in their eating behaviors and related thoughts and emotions. Eating disorders affect some several million people at any given time, most often women between the ages of 12 and 35.

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a medical treatmentmost commonly used in patients with severe major depression or bipolar disorder that has not responded to other treatments. It involves a brief electrical stimulation of the brain while the patient is under anesthesia.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder in which time-consuming obsessions and compulsions significantly interfere with a person’s routine, making it difficult to work or to have a normal social life. OCD often begins in childhood, adolescence or early adulthood. Afflicting over four million Americans, OCD is equally common in men and women and knows no geographic, ethnic, or economic boundaries.

Panic Disorder

Panic attack, the core feature of panic disorder, is a period of intense fear or discomfort that strikes suddenly, often in familiar places, where there is seemingly nothing threatening an individual. But when the attack comes, it feels as if there is a real threat, and the body reacts accordingly.


What are Phobias? Phobias affect people of all ages, from all walks of life, and in every part of the country. They are the most common psychiatric illness among women of all ages and are the second most common illness among men older than 25. Any phobia that interferes with daily living and creates extreme disability should be treated.

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

What is Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)? PTSD is a psychiatric disorder that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed life-threatening events such as natural disasters, serious accidents, terrorist incidents, war, or violent personal assaults like rape.

Psychiatric Dimensions of HIV and AIDS

Mental health problems can strike anybody, but people with HIV are more likely to experience a range of mental health issues. More common are feelings of acute emotional distress, depression, and anxiety, which can often accompany adverse life-events. HIV also can directly infect the brain, causing impairment to memory and thinking.


Psychotherapy is a treatment that involves a relationship between a therapist and patient. It can be used to treat a broad variety of mental disorders and emotional difficulties.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

During the fall and winter months, some people suffer from symptoms of depression that can appear gradually or come on all at once. These symptoms often dissipate as spring arrives and stay in remission through the summer months. For some people, this is a sign that they suffer from SAD.

Teen Suicide

A considerable number of teenagers are dealing with depression, an illness with significant long-term consequences, including an increased risk for suicide. Simply taking the time to talk to troubled teenagers about their emotions or problems can help prevent the senseless tragedy of teen suicide.

Sexual Orientation

“Sexual orientation” is a term frequently used to describe a person’s romantic, emotional or sexual attraction to another person. A person attracted to another person of the same sex is said to have a homosexual orientation and may be called gay (both men and women) or lesbian.

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common mental disorders affecting children. ADHD is a brain condition that is often first identified in school-aged children when it causes disruption in the classroom or problems with schoolwork.

Mental Health in American Indians and Alaska Natives

American Indians and Alaska Natives are very diverse in culture and language. More than 4 million Americans, approximately 1.5 percent of the U.S. population, identify themselves as having American Indian or Alaska Native heritage.

Mental Health in Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

Among all ethnicities, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the least likely to seek help for mental disorders. Asian cultural values of self-reliance and reservation and fear of shaming the family keep many from seeking assistance with emotional problems.

Mental Health in the Hispanic/Latino Community

Many Hispanics/Latinos rely on their extended family, community, traditional healers, and/ or churches for help during a health crisis. As a result, thousands of Hispanics/Latinos with mental health often go without professional mental health treatment.

Mental Health in African Americans

To ensure African American communities have access to adequate and affordable care, a better understanding of the complex role that cultural backgrounds and diverse experiences play in mental disorders in these communities is vital.

Mental Health of Seniors

Studies show that seniors are at greater risk of some mental disorders and their complications than younger people, and many of these illnesses can be accurately diagnosed and treated.

Substance Abuse and Addiction

Addiction is a serious illness. Health, finances, relationships, and careers can be ruined. The abuse of drugs and alcohol is by far the leading cause of preventable illnesses and premature death in our society. Drug and alcohol use is associated with high-risk sexual behaviors and injection drug use, two major modes of HIV transmission.


Schizophrenia is a chronic brain disorder that affects more than one percent of the population. When schizophrenia is active, symptoms can include delusions, hallucinations, trouble with thinking and concentration, and lack of motivation.

Warning Signs of Major Mental Health

Major mental health such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder rarely appear “out of the blue.” Most often family, friends, teachers, or individuals themselves recognize that “something is not quite right” about their thinking, feelings, or behavior before one of these illnesses appears in its full blown form.

What is Mental Health?

In the past, the subject of mental health was surrounded with mystery and fear. Today, we have made tremendous progress in our understanding and especially, in our ability to offer effective treatments. However, questions about mental health often go unanswered, and stand in the way of people receiving help.

What is a Psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental health, including substance use disorders. Psychiatrists are qualified to assess both the mental and physical aspects of psychological disturbance.

© 2012 American Psychiatric Association. All Rights Reserved.

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