Symptoms of Mental Health Disturbances

Young woman expressing depressionAlthough not necessarily indicative of mental disturbance, these actions, or signs of trouble, can sometimes help you identify someone who needs help:

ACTING DIFFERENT THAN USUAL. Can you link this change in behavior to something that has happened recently? Any event, such as the death of a close relative, or even something positive – like a job promotion – can trigger a troublesome emotional reaction.

SEEMS TO BE EXCESSIVELY WITHDRAWN AND DEPRESSED. Are hobbies, friends and relatives ignored suddenly? Is there a feeling that this person has begun to lose self-confidence? Depressive illnesses have many symptoms similar to these.

COMPLAINS OF EPISODES OF EXTREME, ALMOST UNCONTROLLABLE, ANXIETY. Is this anxiety unrelated to any normal concern, such as a child’s illness, a backlog of bills? Anxiety that has no discernible cause is a sign of an emotional difficulty.

BECOMES AGGRESSIVE, RUDE, AND ABUSIVE OVER MINOR INCIDENTS. Are there remarks about groups or individuals “out to get me?” If that last remark was made in all seriousness, and blowups and violent physical behavior occur, there is a strong indication some help may be required.

A CHANGE IN THE PERSON’S HABITS, SUCH AS EATING, SLEEPING OR GROOMING. Suddenly, has the individual almost stopped eating? Conversely, has he or she started eating or drinking a lot in a compulsive manner? Either sleeplessness or too much sleeping can be indicators, if they are done to excess.

Any of these signals, if they continue for any length of time, may call for professional help. Fortunately, early identification of the underlying problems causing the behavior can often make symptoms disappear.
Source – NIMH

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  1. Chris V. says

    I have a niece that my husband and I have been responsible for the last 24 years. She is pretty high functioning and doesn’t know that she has LD. In the last 4 months she has been taking money from her account and buying fast food, she has spent approximately $1100.00. She has asthma and has had surgery on both knees and is able to work 24-30 hours per week. In the last 4 months she has gained almost 10 pounds and even though all of her doctors tell her to exercise she does not. We are not her legal guardians but we oversee her finances because if we didn’t she would spend it all. She works with Easter Skills and has a caseworker that takes her to doctor appts, grocery shopping. I am at the end of my patience as she will not do what she is suppose to do. In the last few months she has called in to work, now on her final warning, if she misses again she will lose her job, was suspended from using Call-A-Ride for a week which is her transportation. I don’t know what to do–any suggestions.

    • LDA of America says

      Today, there are many apps that assist with people’s challenge areas. I suggest checking out the various reviewed apps at Georgia Tech’s Tools for Life at Also, it sounds like it will be more effective for her to have someone besides a family member talk to her about her unhealthy habits. Maybe her caseworker with Easter Seals would be the one to do that. Since you are not her legal guardians, there is a limit to what you can do. She may have to face the natural consequences of her actions in order for her to understand the seriousness of her choices.

  2. Stephanie says

    I’m hopelessly lost sad can’t cope with what’s going on or I cant except change can’t live like this I get stock in bed room for days pee in Cups . Won’t take shower in days afraid of how other would think of me. I avoid family and closed friends it trigger my feelings and emotions I can’t take it anymore I stop talking to anyone who makes me feel what I trying hard not to year has passed I with out them . I can bring my self I call them . I don’t need them it’s better this way but is not . How do I ever supports my self I can’t work I afrid . Hard to talk to others with out my boyfriend help I would be in the streets
    What’s wrong with me why can’t I get right .

  3. I have trouble focusing on what I just read a lot of times don’t understand what I had read

  4. As alarming early signs, this list serves as a good resource to consider visiting a counselor or seek some other type of treatment. Change in habits such as food and sleep habits, I think are strong indicators that something is wrong. However, it’s good to have an expert opinion before you opt for therapy. Dr Lana Ackaway offers some good advice on this:

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