Men and Mental Health

By Mindy Longhurst

Mental health is a huge issue across the nation. Both men and women suffer from mental health issues. However, women are diagnosed with mental health issues more than men. This might be for several reasons. Women are more likely to discuss their feelings and seek help when having difficulty. Men sometimes try to push these emotions out and seek help after the symptoms have gotten worse. Sometimes men exhibit symptoms differently than women.

Symptoms for depression in men include:

  • Anger or aggressiondepression-despair-grief-897817
  • Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Disinterest in things they like
  • Headaches
  • Physical pain
  • Change of eating schedule/desire
  • Change in mood and/or behavior
  • Weight loss or weight gain
  • Change in energy level
  • Thoughts of death
  • Negative thoughts

Symptoms for anxiety include:

  • Anxious for 6 months or more
  • Fear and concern exaggerated

If you believe there is an issue going on, sit down and talk to your loved ones about the way that you are feeling. If you do this, you will be able to open the doors to seeking help. The DSM-5 is a test that doctors use to diagnose someone with depression or anxiety. This can be found at the American Psychiatric Association website. You can sit with a close friend or loved one and go through the test together. This will help you to know if you need to go see a doctor or not.

If you have been diagnosed

If a doctor or medical physician has diagnosed you, it is okay. Knowing there is an issue is the first step to healing.

Ways to help with treatment

Therapy

Going to therapy is a great way to help monitor progress. This will help you to be able to express your feelings openly.

Medication

Doctors and other medical physicians can prescribe medications to help with depression and anxiety. If medication has been prescribed, make sure to consult with your physician before going off your medication.

Sleep

Having regular and adequate amounts of sleep is great for the body. This will help your body to heal and function each day.

Exercise

Exercise is a great way to bring stability and happiness into your life. Sometimes exercise has longer lasting positive effects than medication. Exercise helps to clear the mind and reduce stress.

How to help someone who has depression or anxiety

The best thing you can do to help someone who has depression and anxiety is to listen. You must be nonjudgmental and listen to what they are going through. Do not try to solve their problems, this can cause more issues. If they are coming to you for emotional support this means that they trust you. Support them the best way you know how.

For more information, please visit https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/men-and-depression/index.shtml

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