Both mental health and substance use are common among Americans today. However, not many people seek or receive help. Likewise, many individuals do not notice their behaviors as signs of mental health or substance use disorders (SUDs). It is essential to recognize and be aware of an individual’s mental health status in order to overcome struggles and create a more fulfilling life.
Common Mental Health Struggles
Some of the most common mental health struggles include the following.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health disorder that develops after a person experiences or witnesses a traumatic event. This trauma could manifest through childhood experiences, the loss of a loved one, a divorce or illness, losing a job, or a catastrophic event such as a car accident or a violent occurrence. Roughly 12 million adults live with PTSD.
Common symptoms of PTSD include:
- Nightmares or flashbacks
- Avoidance of places and things
- Avoiding discussing the traumatic event or feelings
- Feelings of hopelessness, guilt, or shame
- Loss of interest in things an individual loves
- Difficulty expressing positive emotions
- Self-destructive behavior
- Trouble holding employment
- Difficulty with personal relationships
- Trouble coping with social situations
Depression and Anxiety
Depression and anxiety are some of the common mental health disorders. Roughly 21 million Americans struggle with depression, and an estimated 19.1% of adults in the U.S. struggle with an anxiety disorder. These common issues may manifest due to genetic, biological, environmental, or psychological factors.
Symptoms of depression include:
- Low energy or fatigue
- Changes in appetite
- Sleeping problems (oversleeping, insomnia, restlessness, or unsatisfying sleep)
- Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Feeling guilty, worthless, or helpless
- Difficulty concentrating
- Thoughts of death or suicide
Symptoms of anxiety will vary based on the specific anxiety disorder a person struggles with. However, common anxiety symptoms include:
- Feeling restless or on-edge
- Racing heart
- Cramps or gastrointestinal problems
- Panic attacks
- Constant worrying
- Problems with sleep
Alcohol and Substance Use Disorders
Alcohol use disorder (AUD) and SUDs can be noted by the following symptoms:
- Changes in behavior
- Mood swings
- Irritability, agitation, or paranoia
- Trouble managing responsibilities
- Decreased involvement or motivation
- Trouble with concentration
- Seeking out substances or dealing with the aftereffects
- Changes in sleeping habits
- Fatigue or difficulty waking up
- Injection marks
- Bloodshot eyes
- Inability to stop using the substance
Alcohol and drug abuse affect an individual’s behaviors, which can eventually lead to an uncontrollable use of the substance at hand. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “[M]ore than 23 million adults in the United States have struggled with problematic drug use.” Biological, psychological, and environmental factors may impact an individual’s alcohol or drug use.
Treatment for Mental Health and Substance Use at Roots Recovery
Without proper treatment or care, these mental health and substance use can become much more severe. Seeking and receiving help is encouraged to take advantage of healthy outlets for expressing emotion. Treatment can guide an individual in creating healthier habits and ultimately create a healthier lifestyle.
Though there are stigmas regarding seeking mental health services, receiving help and support carves a new path of life for clients. This care manifests a new hope in individuals, allowing them to heal and understand they are not limited by their mental health or substance use. Roots Recovery offers many different therapies and programs for clients looking to recover from mental health and substance use problems.
The Importance of Mindfulness
A significant portion of treatment at Roots Recovery deals with mindfulness. Our team encourages creating a connection between mind, body, and spirit. By developing this inner connection and peace, understanding mentality and health become easier and less pressuring. This level of understanding is known as discovering the “root” of an individual’s mental health disorders or SUD.
Once a client can understand their thought process and mental health on this deeper level, they can develop coping mechanisms. These coping mechanisms, which can be as simple as meditative practices or journaling, can be implemented into daily life. After treatment is complete, these mechanisms can persist and continue to improve an individual’s mental health.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) treatment is a service that works to treat depression. The brain is stimulated using electromagnetic fields that occur in short pulses. These pulses are sent to the part of the brain affiliated with depression. TMS is a safe and effective therapy free from side effects. This treatment is also implemented in top psychiatry hospitals, and most insurance companies also cover this therapy.
A client typically goes through TMS for about four to six weeks, five days a week, and for roughly 19-37 minutes per session. After this period of treatment, many clients note that their depression symptoms significantly improved or went away entirely.
Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing
The eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy option at Roots Recovery works to replace negative emotional reactions to difficult memories with positive reactions or beliefs. In working toward a more positive mindset, this therapy initially works to reduce the height of negative emotions.
EMDR works in a series of repetitive eye movements, moving them back and forth for 20-30 seconds. Therapists consider this “dual stimulation,” where the clients stimulate the brain with these eye movements or other rhythmic movements, stimulating memories by recalling a traumatic event. As a client continues EMDR, they experience a decrease in negative emotions and vividness of traumatic events or images.
Here at Roots Recovery, we offer a surplus of therapies and services to help you cope with mental health and substance use. Some of these include mindfulness-based therapies or practices, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), and eye movement desensitization reprocessing (EMDR). We encourage clients to work in both individual and group settings in order to understand their mental health and substance use on a deeper level. Our team values carving a path out for each client to live a sober, healthy, and fulfilling life outside of their disorders. Though seeking help can be overwhelming, it is important to reach out and create new meaning in your life. Contact Roots Recovery at (562) 473-0827 to learn more.