Mental Health Screenings​

Mental health problems are common around the world, professional help is available for those in need. Often times, individuals experiencing problems can improve their symptoms and even recover. 

Mental Health Screenings​

Mental health problems are common around the world, professional help is available for those in need. Often times, individuals experiencing problems can improve their symptoms and even recover. 

What Is Mental Health ?

With the current COVID-19 pandemic, the stresses of life adhering to the “new normal” is contributing to a national mental health crisis. The need for mental health services is on the rise to address growing concerns of the average American citizen in all types of communities.

So, what exactly is mental health?

It is a combination of our psychological, emotional and social well-being, which has a strong effect on how we feel, think and act. According to Mental Health, our state of mental health also plays a crucial role in determining how we handle stress, make daily choices, and relate to those around us. Having balanced mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood to adolescence through adulthood. 

Through your life, when mental health troubles are encountered, your mood, thinking, and behavior may be affected.

Many factors contribute to mental health conditions, such as:

  • Biological Factors: genes and brain chemistry
  • Life Experiences: trauma and abuse
  • Family History: history of mental problems

Although mental health problems are common around the world, professional help is available for those in need. Often times, individuals experiencing problems can improve their symptoms and even recover. 

What Is A Mental Health Screening?

A mental health screening is utilized to help patients find out if they have mental health disorders, which is done by taking an examination of your emotional health. Data from Medline Plus suggests that half of all Americans are affected by mental disorders during their lifetime.

Although there are many types of mental disorders, some of the most common are:

  • Depression & Mood: Mental disorders that mimic sadness or grief, but are capable of causing feelings of extreme anger, sadness and frustration.
  • Anxiety: Anxiety causes excessive fear and worry’s in relation to real and at times imagined situations.
  • Eating: This is characterized by obsessive behaviors and thoughts that are related to eating and body image. They can cause people to overeat (binge), dangerously limit food intake, or a combination of both.
  • ADHD: ADHD is known as the most common mental disorder in children, which often continues into adulthood. ADHD commonly shows signs of trouble control compulsive disorders and paying attention. School can be especially challenging for students with this condition.
  • PTSD: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder often occurs when people experience a traumatic event, often times front line combat or a serious accident. The most common side effect of PTSD is feelings of fear that are triggered by sounds and visuals that remind the individual of the traumatic life event. 
  • Addictive (Substance Abuse): Many individuals deal with addictive disorders, most times involving alcohol or drugs, which causes a severe risk of death or overdose.
  • Bipolar (Manic Depression): This disorder is charactered by people who have alternating episodes of extreme highs (mania) and deep depression.
  • Schizophrenia / Psychotic: Among the most severe mental health conditions, these cause people to see, hear, and believe in things that are not real.

Effects from mental health issues range from mild to life threatening, fortunately many individuals with seek help from mental health experts and are successfully treated with a combination of verbal therapy and medication.

Do I Need A Mental Health And Wellness Screening?

You may need a screening if you have certain symptoms or risk factors that are present through your daily life. Having this type of screening is the first step towards receiving professional care and setting yourself up for success with proper treatment options. 

If you or a family member exhibits any of these common symptoms, seeking care is high recommended.

  • Excessive fear and worrying
  • Dramatic / scary mood swings
  • Confusion and trouble concentrating 
  • Avoidance of social situations
  • Extreme sadness
  • Feelings of worthlessness
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions (attempted suicide)

Risk Factors

Mental health concerns are not limited to age, sex, ethnicity, income or stage of life – everyone has a risk of developing an issue. Many individuals with a mental health condition, have more than one at a time.

According to Medical News Today, mental health disorders are the leading cause of disability in the United States and many other parts of the developed world.

Stressors of life such as financial and social circumstances, as well as lifestyle choices and predisposed biological factors are all contributors to the state of a person’s mental health. 

What Happens During A Screening?

During a screening your health care provider will administer a physical exam, as well as asking about your mood, feelings, behavior patterns and other possible symptoms. They may also ask about history of mental illness in your family. 

A common cause of symptoms may be related to a physical ailment such as thyroid disease that causes mental symptoms. If this is suspected, your provider will order a blood test to find out more details. 

Here To Help identifies a few common types of screenings that are used to determine mental health disruptions:

  • Risky Drinking Screening: Risky drinking refers to whether or not drinking alcohol increases the chance of hurting oneself. The risks related to alcohol consumption are linked to situations that an individual consumes alcohol and the amount consumed.
  • Body Image Screening: This examines attitudes and behaviors that one has towards their body shape and eating habits. While this does not test for an eating disorder, it does help patients reflect on their own health choices and potential ways to improve upon them.
  • Mental Well-Being Screening: This test looks at a patient’s positive aspects of well-being in terms of social support and self-esteem, encouraging reflection upon thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that are often overlooked. 
  • Anxiety Screening: There are 8 types of anxiety disorders: obsessive-compulsive disorder, illness anxiety, specific phobia, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, post-traumatic stress disorder). Each of these classifications have distinct effects on the way that anxiety is felt.
  • Depression Screening: Depression makes it difficult to enjoy life, may feel hopeless and have low energy levels, often times having trouble eating and sleeping. 

What Do The Results Mean?

When someone is diagnosed with a disorder, it is crucial to use mental health resources available and seek treatment as soon as possible. Specific treatment plans will vary depending on each individual case and the severity of the symptoms.

At South Pointe Healthcare we offer various mental health services designed to detect and treat disorders of all kinds. If you think that yourself, a friend, family member, or loved one may have a condition do not hesitate to reach out for support.

Do not wait. Take control of your health today.