There are many types of mental disorders that many people easily confuse as there are a multitude of combinations which comprise abnormal thoughts, perceptions, emotions, behaviour and relationships. Mental disorders continue to increase with significant impacts on health, major social, human rights and economic consequences throughout the world. While there are over 200 classified types of mental illness that have been recorded, there are at least 10 most common psychological disorders that every person should know about and each condition can vary greatly from person to person.
1. Panic Disorder
A type of anxiety disorder characterized by sudden episodes of panic and fear attacks which commonly last approximately 10 minutes. Some of the common symptoms include shortness of breath, numbness, rapid heartbeat, palpitations, shaking and sweating.
It involves an intense anxious but irrational sense of being under threat(conspiracy or persecution). Common symptoms include suspicion, hypervigilance, defensive attitude, feeling of betrayal, anger and mistrust.
A serious disorder which affects a person’s capability to think, feel and behave properly. A person inflicted may find it hard to distinguish between imagination and reality. Symptoms include delusion, hearing voices, fear, lack of concentration, disorganized speech and hallucination.
4. Eating disorder
It’s an illness that involves irregular eating habits and extreme distress about body weight and shape. There are 3 types of eating disorder which include:
- Binge Eating: Under this condition, the person usually loses control over his/her eating.
- Bulimia: Binge eating followed by behaviours to make up for overeating, such as fasting or forced vomiting.
- Anorexia: Obsessive fear of gaining weight. An individual suffering from Anorexia will limit his/her food consumption at any cost.
A mental condition where an individual finds it difficult to fall asleep or to stay asleep. This may be caused by various psychiatric and medical conditions. Some of the impacts of this condition include sleepiness, cognitive impairment, depressed mood, irritability, lack of concentration and low energy.
A mental disorder characterized by unusual mood swings with periods of depression which lead to low energy, poor motivation, loss of interest and apathy. Bipolar can also lead to periods of elevation where an individual can experience high energy, reduced need for sleep and loss of touch with reality.
7. Obsessive-compulsive disorder(OCD)
A type of anxiety disorder in which people have recurring thoughts or urge to check something or perform an activity repeatedly. Some of the most common anxiety disorder include:
- hoarders: afraid that something bad will happen if they throw something away
- counters: obsessed with numbers and symmetry
- checkers: repetitively check things like door lock, switch, etc
- washers: afraid of contamination and repetitively clean or wash
8. Post-traumatic stress disorder(PTSD)
PTSD is a mental disorder that individuals can develop after experiencing a life-threatening or traumatic event such as accident, sexual assault, fight, etc. Common symptoms include nightmares, sleeping disorder, flashbacks, disturbing thoughts, heightened fight or flight response, and attempt to avoid trauma-related cues.
Sadness, apathy or low mood swing can last at least 2 weeks and is bad enough to affect regular activities. Some of the symptoms include loss of appetite, sleeping disorder, isolation, guilt, low energy, loss of interest and low self-esteem.
An anxiety disorder which involves irrational and persistent fear of an object or situation that could last for more than six months. This disorder may also trigger panic attacks. There are 3 types of phobias which are:
- social phobia: fear of other judgements
- agoraphobia: fear of leaving home or a safe area
- specific phobia: fear of objects or animals
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