Mental health problems are common; about 25% of the population believe they suffer from some form of mental health problem at some point. Anyone suffering from a mental health problem can access the right treatment, and most who do seek help will make a full recovery, but unfortunately, there are still people who are afraid to admit that they can’t cope or need help. They will suffer unnecessary psychological suffering due to a lack of understanding of their illness or awareness of what support is available.
Your primary care physician should be contacted first. They will be able to analyze your symptoms and your physical and mental health in general and all other relevant aspects, such as any family history of mental illness, to deliver an appropriate diagnosis. If the right help and assistance are provided, For most people, a simple visit to the doctor may be all it takes to get them on the road to recovery.
However, your doctor may feel that you could also benefit from other mental health services. Once they have made a diagnosis, they can start you on an appropriate treatment programme that includes medication and referral to other professionals or specialists. If necessary, in the mental health team, e.g., social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, different types of counsellors or therapists, etc.
The Community Mental Health Team (CMHT)
You may need specialist skills to help you manage your mental illness, and since one person cannot be an expert in every area, you could be referred to someone on the community mental health team. The community mental health team depends on the region you live in. Some are affiliated with a hospital or work out of a doctor’s office, and others may have their clinic in a separate building. Still, usually consist of professionals such as psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses who may also be trained to deal with specific problems or behaviours, clinical psychologists, occupational therapists, social workers, and various other therapists and counsellors.
One person will likely be appointed as your main worker, who will regularly contact you and visit your home. This person may be a social worker, a nurse, some therapist, or a social psychiatric nurse or CPN.
The CPN will regularly review your progress, identify and assist you in resolving any issues, and put you in touch with others who can help you. They will monitor your mediation and any effects of that medication and provide general support. They work closely with other professionals on the team so that everyone is aware of particular issues or challenges that need to be addressed. The CMHT will also regularly inform your doctor about your progress, medication, and other matters related to your case.
You may need help from other professionals. For example, an occupational therapist can help you regain some independence in your life if you have a disability, help you do things for yourself and increase your confidence in dressing, washing, and other practical skills. Social workers can help with many social issues, such as housing needs, financial difficulties, and perhaps parenting or childcare issues. The Community Mental Health Team allows you to access the right help from professionals trained in a specific area.
You may need to spend some time in the hospital to overcome a particularly difficult episode of mental illness or where it is deemed appropriate, but this decision is not taken lightly. Hospitals can provide safety and protection, and many people will voluntarily enter the hospital to get the right help and support. However, there are also mandatory admissions under the GGZ to protect the person himself or his environment. For some people, the thought of hospitalization can be frightening. Still, it’s important to remember that a hospital stay can be life-saving and that hospitals are there to help and are better equipped to deal with particularly severe cases of mental illness.
As such, family and friends can play an important role in helping someone with mental health problems make progress and regain control of their life and, as such, are an extremely important part of any support network. Many other agencies, support organizations, and charities assist people with various mental health problems. Some will also address mental health issues by raising awareness in the community. Others will be able to provide information, advice, and support to people affected by mental health issues in their families.