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Take Control of Your Mental Health Care

By Paul Rothbart

Mental health is every bit as important as physical health. You can't have one without the other. For what seems like forever, there has been a stigma attached to having mental health problems and it has only been until fairly recently that viable treatment options have been developed. Finally, society is beginning to accept mental health problems as just another set of illnesses that can be diagnosed and treated. But it's important that you participate in your mental health care and treatment. Just as you eat well and exercise, there are things you can do to take control of your mental health care.

Work With Your Therapist

A good therapist is a wonderful thing and can certainly help you recover from and learn to deal with your mental health problems. You will get out of therapy what you put into it. It's essential to participate fully in your treatment. It's more than just a weekly session. Between sessions, spend some time thinking about what you discussed the last time you talked to your counselor. Use whatever insights you may have gained to lead you to further discoveries. Come into your next session ready to discuss what you have learned or what new questions may have come to you. If you put in the work, your treatment will be faster and more effective.

Create a Support System

Mental health problems can be difficult to deal with but you don't have to do it alone. Surround yourself with family, close friends, and people you trust. Choose those who know you well and care about you. You want to associate with people who have positive attitudes and will encourage your growth. Often, those closest to you can see things that you can't. This can be very helpful in your treatment.

Seek Out Peers

Family and friends can help but finding a group of peers, people who have similar mental health issues may be the most helpful of all. This is why group therapy is so effective for some people. Talking to others who can relate and have had similar experiences can help you feel that you are not alone and not abnormal. You can share stories about negative experiences and how you overcame them. Think of it as team therapy. 

When it comes to your health, the mental part should never be neglected. There is no reason to be ashamed of mental illness. Help is available and many people have overcome their mental health problems and gone on to lead successful, happy lives. I know this for a fact. I am one of them.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Monrovia, Calif.

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