Mental health has always been a source of confusion and shame in many cultures. In recent years, there has been a dramatic shift in the way mental health medication is viewed. Instead of being a stigma that people avoid talking about, awareness has been raised regarding the importance of proper treatment. The traditional school of thought always sought to treat mental illness with medications, however, advancements in the field have shown that this is only part of the solution.
Medication Management: Mental Health And The Role Of Medication
Medication management and its use in the treatment of people with mental illness is often misunderstood. We hope to shed some light on the subject.
Taking Medication For Mental Illness is Not a Weakness
In a society that places a lot of importance on personal responsibility, it can often be hard to depend on mental health medication to improve symptoms. It is normal for those suffering from a mental illness or even a mental health disorder to be dependent on managed medication in order to function properly. Keep in mind that taking medication to help maintain your mental health is not a disability, weakness, or crutch. It is also not an excuse for certain behaviors.
Medication is often the only way to ensure a healthy flow of neurotransmitters which enables a person to function properly. Most people are able to create the right balance of dopamine, serotonin, adrenaline, and norepinephrine on their own. However, some people need help in treating bipolar disorder and treating depression. Similar to diabetic patients who need external insulin in order to survive, proper medication management can ensure a person with mental health problems is able to thrive.
Medication and Personality Changes
Mental health issues can change a person’s personality or how they express themselves to others. In some cases, using medication is needed as a part of a larger treatment plan for many mental health issues. One of the most common concerns people have is how the use of medication may affect their regular personality or behavior over the long term. Fear of what is not known can prevent some people from moving forward with treatment. However, it is a critical tool for positive mental health.
Proper medication management will help patients to control negative behaviors, urges, and thoughts in a way that offers personal empowerment. For some, this may mean a change in personality. For example, a person who suffers from anxiety or manic episodes will no longer be a prisoner to those feelings when taking anti-anxiety medications. As a result, their true personality will be allowed to emerge. Stopping medications can cause a regression which is why proper monitoring and management are critical for progress.
Medications used to manage mental health conditions can have a dramatic effect on the way a person experiences life. In most cases, this is a positive thing. The majority of medications used help to regulate certain chemicals in the body and the brain. This addresses mostly physiological symptoms relating to mental illness. Some people may have negative reactions to medications or even prefer the way they felt and viewed the world prior to starting on a corrective regimen.
Medications Work Differently For Everyone
Mental illness and mental health disorders have a lot of the same symptoms, but they will affect each patient differently. It is important to keep this in mind because medications and treatments used will also vary from person to person. Two people suffering from the same condition may also not react to medication in the same way. In fact, some patients are able to manage their condition without the use of medication while others may require one or more medications just to be productive.
Mental health medications have been researched at length, but they are still not a perfected science. Various factors can change how a medication works in a person. This includes other medications they are taking, age, weight, and other health issues. The key to effective medication management for mental health is finding the best balance for each individual. This is a long process that will require a bit of trial and error in the form of medication dosage adjustments. Sometimes, a medication that is effective for a large number of people can be totally ineffective for one person. This is not a failure on the part of the patient. This is merely the nature of treating mental health issues with medication.
Medication Alone is Not Effective
Mental health concerns can be treated with medication. However, it is important to note that medicine alone is not a cure. Regular sessions with a mental health professional are an essential part of the healing process. This allows for oversight to ensure that the medications are addressing the problem, or if they are causing more problems in addition to the mental health disorder. A doctor will be able to track side effects and positive changes in addition to correcting dosages when something goes wrong.
SAGE Counseling Omaha
At SAGE Counseling Omaha, our primary focus is on helping you to get the support and treatment that you need as you move forward. We all experience challenges that are often too difficult to work through on their own, and we are here to support you during these tough times.
When you connect with our compassionate counseling team, you can rest assured that you will receive the individualized care that you need. Contact us today. For approved clients, we are able to utilize telehealth services through our HIPAA compliant virtual software.
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