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Mental health problems

Explains the most commonly discussed mental health problems, including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support. Includes tips for helping yourself, and guidance for friends and family.

Your stories

Discovering depression

Stephen
Posted on 27/09/2013

Life in limbo – waiting for talking therapy

Francesca blogs about the impact of waiting for talking therapy, as part of our We Need to Talk campaign.

Francesca
Posted on 28/11/2013

The importance of choice – access to talking therapies

Al blogs for us about the importance of choice and having access to the right talking therapy to suit you.

Posted on 02/12/2013

What causes mental health problems?

Mental health problems can have a wide range of causes. In most cases, no one is sure precisely what the cause of a particular problem is. We can often point to things that trigger a period of poor mental health but some people tend to be more deeply affected by these things than others.

The following factors could potentially trigger a period of poor mental health:

  • childhood abuse, trauma, violence or neglect
  • social isolation, loneliness or discrimination
  • the death of someone close to you
  • stress
  • homelessness or poor housing
  • social disadvantage, poverty or debt
  • unemployment
  • caring for a family member or friend
  • a long-term physical health condition
  • significant trauma as an adult, such as military combat, being involved in a serious accident or being the victim of a violent crime
  • physical causes – for example, a head injury or a condition such as epilepsy can have an impact on behaviour and mood (it is important to rule out causes such as this before seeking further treatment for a mental health problem)
  • genetic factors – there are genes that cause physical illnesses, so there may be genes that play a role in the development of mental health problems.

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