Tarrant County Texas Support Options for Mental Wellness
What is Mental Wellness?
Mental health impacts every aspect of our lives. It affects how we feel, how we think, and our actions; it can even affect our physical health.
So now that we know how important it is, you may be wondering, what now? How can we tell if we are not mentally well? And is there anything we can do to help strengthen our mental wellness?
Icare Crisis Line
For mental health and substance use emergency support and referral (MHMR of Tarrant County).
Youth Crisis Hotline
Text CONNECT to 741-741
What are the Warning Signs of Mental Illness?
The first step toward achieving mental wellness is being honest with yourself. That is, you must be willing to make a realistic assessment of how you are doing. Are you constantly feeling stressed or depressed? Do you ever feel a sense of hopelessness? And what things do you do to deal with those negative thoughts and feelings?
Of course, maybe it is not you that you are worried about, but a friend or a loved one. You’re concerned about the person, but you’re not a psychologist; how can you tell if they are not okay? MentalHealth.gov lists the following warning signs of a possible mental health issue:
- Eating or sleeping too much (or too little)
- Pulling away from people and usual activities
- Having low or no energy
- Feeling numb or like nothing matters
- Having unexplained aches and pains
- Feeling helpless or hopeless
- Smoking, drinking more than usual or using drugs
- Feeling unusually forgetful, on edge, angry, worried, or scared
- Yelling or fighting with family and friends
- Experiencing severe mood swings that cause relationship problems
- Having thoughts and memories you can’t get out of your head
- Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
- Thinking of harming yourself or others
- Inability to perform daily tasks like getting to work or school
This is not a complete list. But it does give you some idea of what to look for in others (or yourself). Thus, it’s possible for someone to have mental health issues and not even be aware of them. To make matters worse, the consequences of not having mental wellness can stay with us for years to come.
How Can I Improve My Mental Wellness?
Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to help build and maintain your mental wellness—without needing medication or having to seek professional help. The World Health Organization offers the following tips that may be helpful:
- Maintain a healthy routine. Go to bed at a consistent time, make sure you get enough sleep, have a healthy diet, try to exercise regularly, and regularly make time to do the things you enjoy.
- Limit alcohol and drug use. Be especially careful about using alcohol or drugs as a way of dealing with fear, anxiety, boredom, and loneliness.
- Limit screen time. Be aware of how much time you spend in front of a screen every day. Make sure that you take regular breaks.
- Be careful about social media. Use your accounts to find and share positive and hopeful stories. Pay attention to how much time you spend on your social media.
- Manage your news. News stories that make you feel anxious or distressed should be kept to a minimum.
In addition, Mental Health America has prepared a list of 31 tips to help boost your mental wellness. Here are just three of their suggestions:
- Keep a journal. When you are writing, try to take note of the things you are grateful for.
- Spend time with a pet or other furry friend.
- Take time to laugh.
Social Interaction Can be Critical to Maintaining Mental Wellness
There is one other thing that many organizations say will help you build up your mental wellness, and it may be the most important: Stay connected to others. The time you spend with friends and loved ones can be very good therapy. If your socializing is limited by the pandemic or other circumstances, you can still call or do video chats.
A particularly useful way to stay connected socially is by helping others. For example, you might help a friend with a home project or buy groceries for someone. Or you could volunteer with an organization. Helping others provides a double benefit: Not only do we get to enjoy the social time, we also get the satisfaction of knowing we have helped others.
When to Seek the Help of a Mental Health Professional
Of course, these strategies are intended for people who may be dealing with “the blues.” Serious mental health issues usually cannot be treated by simple things like doing volunteer work.
So if you think the issue is more serious, or even if you’re not sure, you should definitely consider getting professional help. A therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist can provide much greater insight.
Mental Wellness Helps Us to Live a Fuller, Happier Life
Mental wellness is not just a nice thing to have; it is essential to our well-being. People who are mentally well typically are in better health and have closer relationships. Mentally healthy people even are more likely to enjoy better financial health. In short, mental wellness is about being able to live and enjoy your life to the fullest.
Ready to get started? Check out some of our resources below.