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Mental Health Treatment Is Nothing to Be Ashamed Of

By Paul Rothbart

Staying healthy and enjoying a good quality of life requires medical treatment from time to time. We get sick, we may become injured. No one has a problem seeing a doctor or taking medication for physical afflictions. Seeing a dentist for regular checkups and having cavities are also accepted as part of living a good life. But, sadly, many people still place a stigma on mental health treatment. Seeing a therapist means there's something wrong with you. I've actually heard people refer to antidepressants as "crazy pills." This attitude must change and only will do so with better education of the topic of mental health.

It's Not You, It's the Chemicals

Let's note first that the brain, while the place where mental processes happen, is still a physical part of the body. It's composed of cells and tissue and there are chemicals and hormones that flow through it, just as in other parts of the body. Sometimes the brain doesn't produce enough of these substances or sometimes they are used up elsewhere. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps produce feelings of happiness and contentment. When there isn't enough of it, depression happens. I know whereof I speak. I have dysthymia, a mild form of depression, and I take medication daily for it. A chemical imbalance is a physical issue that affects your mental state. It doesn't mean you're crazy. 

Life Can Be Really Hard

Just living day to day can be a very stressful experience. Your job can cause stress, sometimes a lot of it. There are bills that need to be paid, a house and families to take care of. Things happen in your community and throughout the world that can be very upsetting. The problems of loved ones add to this pile of stress. Things like this are going to affect your mood and mental state. There is no getting around that. It doesn't make you weak to need some help now and then. In fact, the weak ones are the people who don't get help because they worry what others will think. It takes strength to do what's right for you.

Get Help

You're not ashamed to see a doctor to treat the flu or allergies. Diabetics take insulin to correct a chemical issue in their bodies. Mental illness is no different. There is no need to be ashamed of getting therapy to help deal with the stress of life. Taking medication for a chemical imbalance is an intelligent and brave thing to do. Be proud to take care of all of you.

The stigma attached to mental illness has been there for far too long. The human body is not perfect and that includes the brain. Get the help you need to correct any problem you have. Give yourself the quality of life you work hard to earn.

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

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