Signs & symptoms of mental illness

When a medical professional diagnosis someone with a mental illness, they use a book, the DSM 5, to look up a list of symptoms that match the theory that they have about which mental illness their patient is experiencing. Below I am going to list the different symptoms that either myself, my family, or my friends noticed about me which later got me diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and now PTSD. I wrote a post similar to this back n April, but I didn’t go into detail, so here is an updated version of that post.

  1. I was irritable 24/7- According to my parents, any and everything set me off. No matter how big or how small the inconvenience was, I couldn’t cope with the change, I would just blow up. I also started to notice this in myself; I would try and suppress those emotions, but I found myself constantly getting pissed off at every little thing that came into my path.
  2. Morbid thoughts- My thoughts were extremely morbid. I would think of different ways of how one person could do, and every scenario possible would play in my head every day. It was very unhealthy. I was pessimistic about every-thing, nothing was every good enough in the world.
  3. Thoughts of suicide- The obvious symptom of my specific mental illness was thoughts of wanting to hurt or kill myself.
  4. Self-harm-self harm can be used for a few different reasons, for different people, with different illnesses. I would self-harm every single day, and wore long sleeves frequently, including in the summer.
  5. Body aches-My body was just aching all of the time, I didn’t hardly want to move out of bed because the pain was equivalent to a bone break.
  6. Sleeping 12+ hours a day-I slept and still sleep at least 12 hours every day. Before the anti-depressants I was so fatigued, you would have thought I had worked four 12 hour shifts in four days, but I wasn’t, I hadn’t one anything but simply go to school, or go to practice. I didn’t hang out with my friends anymore, so I wasn’t ever out unless I was at cheer or school, so that was concerning.
  7. Anxiety-Depression and anxiety usually go hand in hand, but of course anxiety can be comorbid with any other type of mental illness. I noticed my heart fluttering more and more. I was terribly nervous about everything I did. I equivalated my anxiety to waking up every day, and feeling like I had to give a presentation, except, I felt like that every minute I was awake.
  8. People pleasing- people pleasing is a common trait of most people, but there comes a point to where it has to stop when it starts to affect your mental health. Personally, I would do whatever it took to keep peace in my family’s household, even if that meant making myself feel terrible about situations that had nothing to do with me.
  9. Stress-I stressed so much to where I would raise my blood pressure to stroke level. I had to go to the ER because I thought I was having a panic attack and didn’t know what to do, and the trauma doctor told me my V waves resembled that of a heart attack. I would worry about things way before it was even time to worry. I would also make other people’s problems my problems
  10. Trembling-I would find myself shaking all the time because I was so nervous.
  11. Feelings of apathy/emptiness-nothing made e happy anymore, not even the things I cherished the most, that was scary to feel.
  12. Decreased appetite-I ate like a rabbit, not being of my eating disorder, but because I genuinely was not hungry. It’s almost like my appetite was suppressed, I was literally so sad I couldn’t eat.

These symptoms are specific to me and my illnesses but also generic enough that they can be found in other mental illnesses. I hope this list gives you a bit of insight of some of the more common symptoms of mental illness.

Photo by Niklas Hamann on UnsplashCheap Website Traffic

Advertisements

A poll:

I really value the opinions of my readers, so much. I have taken the past 3 weeks to reflect on my time in a psychiatric hospital recently, and I have my pros and cons. Some pros being the amazing people you get to meet, the treatment you receive, and the reflection you make upon yourself during your stay. Some cons being, your freedom is taken away, you’re isolated from the people you love, and It can be a very scary environment. What I want to hear from you all is what your opinions are on psychiatric (in-patient) hospitals, and if you have ever been admitted into one, and what was your experience? Let me know below in the comments!

I hate nothing about you

I have talked about previously, what it’s like dealing with heartache and heartbreak with a friend, but what I haven’t talk about yet is what it’s like being “in love”, whether it’s the first time or the fourth time. Love is very cliché and complicated, but extremely unique to your own experience. Everyone experiences loving someone differently

When you are in love with that special person, your person, everything they do, you do. But also, everything they feel, you feel. You take on that person’s pain, which is essentially what you signed up for. You do things for them you wouldn’t normally do. Your judgment is impaired, almost as if you were intoxicated. When you love this person, you end up baring your soul to them. You’d truly do anything for them. They can do no wrong in your eyes, they are perfect. Until one day they’re not. They cheat on you, hurt you, leave you or choose someone else, and yet your love for them doesn’t waiver. You’re left wondering why you aren’t good enough for him or her. You gave this person your heart, and they broke it and left. You’d give your life for this person and yet they still left you. They say they love you, but the truth is, they love the attention you give them, but it isn’t reciprocated. The love you have for them is so much more aggressive then the love they have for you. You lie awake at night, every night, wondering why, just why they don’t love you back. The pain physically hurts in your chest because you just can’t breathe without this person. They left a void in you that no one else will fill. Your heart is broken because you just had to fall in love.

Something I have had to learn is that some people will never love you the same way that you love them. Many people have explained to me that it’ll get better, the heartache gets easier, but if you truly love someone that feeing will never truly go away. Whenever that person needs you, despite what they did to you, you’d be there. They will never understand the hatred you have developed in your heart because of how much distress they put you through. Love is a dangerous thing. It can help you or harm you. I write this post to say heart break is normal, being in love is normal, and you will essentially get through this phase. I have to constantly tell myself it’ll be okay, and that I am capable of being loved, bu I do also know it feels like you’re not capable of being loved by someone, but I’m reassuring you, that you are. We’re all going to get through this, we just have to keep on keepin’ on.

Photo by DESIGNECOLOGIST on Unsplash

A much needed farewell

You left me to die. Literally. 

You broke my heart and had the nerve to say I broke yours. 

You left because I was sick and had no control, 

but you didn’t care. 

You turned everyone against me and made me the only bad guy. 

Yeah, I did my dirt, but what about you? 

Huh? 

You weren’t perfect. You left me for dead, remember? 

I’ve been blaming myself for years, for something that wasn’t entirely my fault, 

it takes two to tell a lie. 

I cried over you. 

I cried for you. 

I hurt myself because of you. 

I hated myself for you. 

I wanted to die because of you, 

yet, I’m still sorry for something I didn’t do. 

You will never see me like you did before. 

I can’t come to terms with that. 

I thought I couldn’t cope without you, 

but here I am,

learning to cope without you.

You’re no longer something I need, just something I thought I wanted. 

And well, 

that isn’t good enough for me anymore. 

You’re dead to me. 

I don’t need you anymore. 

I know you wish I were dead, and although I don’t wish you were dead, you are, in fact, dead, 

to me. 

You were my everything, yet you threw me away like I was nothing. 

You didn’t look back, 

not once. 

You saw me at my worst and couldn’t handle it. 

I wondered for years why I ended up not being good enough for you, 

turns out, I was never good enough for you, 

nor will I ever be. 

This is me letting you go. 

I hurt enough for the both of us, 

but if I’m going to make it out alive, I need to be rid of you.

Im finally free.

Goodbye, for good.

 

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

It gets better

*TRIGGER WARNING* 

Below contains my suicide note, that I wrote 5 years ago. If you are not in a good place to read this, I advise you to not to do so, thank you!

“So by the time you get this I won’t be here anymore. I’m tired. Not the sleepy kind of tired, the emotional drainage I feel every waking moment I spend breathing. The kind of tired I feel that it feels like too much work to pick out clothes to wear to school, or take a shower, or take my medicine. I’m tired of standing in the mirror with a knife to my throat wondering if anyone would ever find my body if I went through with it, or even care for that matter. I’m so sick of being unhappy and not meaning a single thing to anyone on this earth. I will be much much much more happy when I’m sleeping with Jesus and it’s better this way. Now that im gone l hope you won’t be furious with me for pushing you away and never letting you in. I’m so sorry for the pain I caused you over the years. Dragging you down my tideous journey of this soul consuming depression. That was never fair to you and I’m so sorry.  my soul is rested in Jesus and I’m covered in the blood of Christ so I will be at peace, I’m not worried. I’m not scared anymore because I’ll be with him. This is truly what I want and I do not regret it at all. No one knew how truly I miserable I was although you may thought you did, you didn’t. What you thought was going on with me was far less worse than what was really going on. Everyday was a constant struggle to get out of bed, to take a shower everyday, go pee, small stuff like that. I don’t want to go out anymore, not even with friends. This is not a life I am trying to live everyday. I know I could have a worse life and there are people out there who do but I could also have a better one, better than the crappy one I am living in. There’s so much going on in my life that you have no idea about and how bad it really is because I was too embarrassed to tell you in fear you’d judge me.  It just hurts so much to the point where I’m feeling physically sick. I don’t want to leave the people that I do love but I possibly cannot keep going with this amount of pain going through me. I have been strong for so long, or so I thought, and there is only so much a person can take, and I have hit my limit, therefore I’ve exceeded my stay. It’s better this way, you’ll see. I didn’t intend for this note to be this long so I’m sorry I was never enough for you.

10.26.14”

This was the suicide note I wrote when I was 15 years old. I am sharing this very personal and vulnerable piece of me because it shows how far I have come. If you’re wondering why I still kept this 5 years later, it is to constantly remind me every day that I will strive to never get back to such a low place ever again. The whole point of my blog is to show how overcoming and dealing with mental illness is possible, that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. As you see in my above note, I couldn’t see light for miles. I didn’t have someone to share with me, their testimony, of how it gets better, and I wish I had. I want that for someone reading this. If you are reading this, I am here to tell you that it, in fact, does get better, 100%. I know you can’t see that because I definitely couldn’t. I didn’t want to hear someone tell me “it gets better” who didn’t know what I was going through, but I know what you’re going through, and yet here I am with a purpose, just like you. You have a purpose. I am so thankful for all of you. If you’re feeling hopeless please feel free to reach out to me, and we will talk through this together. You’ve got this. You’re a rock star.

Photo by sydney Rae on Unsplash

Having different mental illnesses

Having one mental illness can definitely lead to having another. Mental illnesses usually build on each other. For instance, if you have Depression, you are more likely to develop anxiety over any other mental illness (which is what happened to me), vice versa. Before I was started showing symptoms and was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, I was only nervous about one thing, and that was public speaking, which is common fear for most of the population. However, after being diagnosed with Depression, I started to get nervous and antsy about everything for no reason. Simple things like talking on the phone to someone other than my mom and dad, terrified me. Public speaking became a phobia, not just a fear, at this point. I became obsessed with pleasing people, even if it hurt me, just so I could avoid conflict, I’d say yes to just about anything, which can be dangerous. I developed a constant tremor in my head and hands that causes me to naturally shake. I avoided anything that put the attention on me. I worry about things, sometimes up to 6 months in advance, which causes constant worry and distress. Of course, along with anxiety comes with anxiety attacks. I had never experienced an anxiety attack before, or so I thought. Every time I get stressed, which is everyday it seems like, I can’t short of breath, and my chest has the sharpest pain possible. It has been so bad, that I have gone to the Emergency Room a few times and have had a doctor tell me that he thought I was having a slight heart attack because that’s what my EKG showed, but because I am so young, and otherwise healthy, that wasn’t logical. It turns out I was having anxiety attacks.

With my anxiety came anxiety of taking any form of pill, which includes my daily medications. I had developed a Somatoform Disorder—- Illness Anxiety Disorder, which is formally known as hypochondriasis. For about a year I would take my medicine very month, and that is only if my parents were shoving it down my throat because I was so scared that I would feel nauseas, like I had when I first started taking the medicine. Nausea is a symptom of new medications, and I didn’t like how I would get nauseas every time I’d take it, so I just stopped taking them all together. Of course, that was detrimental to my treatment because I started to develop other physical symptoms that piggy backed off my Somatoform Disorder.

It took me a long time to convince my parents that I wasn’t ‘just’ over-exaggerating, but that It is an actual illness. Knowing my body, and wanting to get better, I got treatment for it.  Having multiple illnesses doesn’t make you weird, or a freak. Knowing you have them helps you get the treatment that you need.

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑