Research has revealed that most mental disorders are brought about by a combination of environmental, biological and psychological factors. Mental illness that is linked to abnormal functioning of the nerve cell system or trails that link certain brain areas is said to be biologically caused. There are also rare cases of biologically caused mental disorder where it is hereditary.
Psychological factors that have been proven to take part in the development of mental illnesses entail the poor ability to interact with others which cause being neglected. Being left out by others can be catastrophic to ones especially for children. Additionally, another psychological factor that is health threatening is undergoing an important early lost such as loss of parents at a tender age.
Environmental factors may also trigger illness in persons that are susceptible to the mental disorder. Some of these factors are living a poor lifestyle, having low self-esteem and having the feeling of insufficiency. Another factor is the cultural or social expectations of the people in ones surrounding (Tyrer 2014). For instance, if the residents of a particular area believe that to be considered beautiful you must be thin; this can lead to incidences of eating disorders which are a mental illness. There are quite some mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, eating disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and schizophrenia just to mention but a few.
Feeling anxious is a normal emotion and is often felt be everyone now and then. Most individuals have confirmed to be anxious before sitting for an examination, when making a vital decision and also when facing a challenge at work. However, anxiety as a disorder is very different and causes distress that mess about with one’s ability to lead a normal life peacefully.
For those persons suffering from an anxiety illness, the nervousness is not temporary, and it does not go away rather it get worse as time goes. It can be manipulative to the extent of affecting the patient’s job performance, relationship with others and also school work. This disorder is of different forms such as panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder.
Anxiety is affected by the way we think and reacts when under certain circumstances. It is obvious that particular people will perceive some things to be more hazardous than they are. Others have the fear of what might happen based on prior bad experiences they once underwent. Psychologists have found out that also childhood experiences contribute to nervousness.
Moreover, research has proven that anxiety disorder can be developed by problems within the brain chemistry (Weiser, Lucas, Becker, and Kilian 2010). It has also been unfolding that adjusting activities in certain areas of the brain are involved in anxiety. And it because of this that anxiety disorder circulates in families hence has a genetic cause. Children who underwent through an abuse such as rape or witnessed a traumatic event stand high chances of developing an anxiety disorder at some point in their life. Another common cause of anxiety disorder is the chronic physical ailment. Commonly diseases associated with nervousness are asthma, diabetes and cardiac disease.
ii.) Obsessive-compulsive disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder is a type of mental disorder that usually summons the repetition of unwanted thoughts. A patient with OCD has to do the same task over and over to get rid of the uncontrollable thought tormenting him or her. For instance, a person might be having the fear that whatever they lay their hands on might have germs (Davey, Dash, and Meeten 2014). To be at peace and stop thinking about the fear they keep washing their hand again and again.
To add to people with OCD try correlating certain stuff or situations with fear and finding means that they will be using to avoid approaching those objects that prompt fear. These means guarantee temporary relief from fear, however since the exact source of the fear is not faced this habit is reinforced. And there are high chances for the fear that was associated with a particular object to spread to other almost similar things.
Although experts have not found what exactly causes obsessive-compulsive disorder research has relieved that deficiency of a brain chemical called serotonin may trigger the disorder (“What Causes Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?” 2014). It has also been noted that there is a difference in certain parts of the brain of a person suffering from OCD in comparison with a non-sufferer. However, the relation between this difference and the mechanism of obsessive-compulsive disorder has not yet been understood.
Having certain personality traits increases the chances of having OCD. For instance, those people who are neat, scrupulous, well organized with high standards are more likely to develop this condition. This illness can also be caused by having the tendency of always over concerning oneself about an issue than most people do. This is familiar with single parents who have a very strong sense of responsibility for themselves and their kids. Being depressed is also a cause of OCD, although quite a huge number of experts are of the idea that depression is more of a symptom of OCD than it is a cause.
Schizophrenia is an adverse and persistent mental illness that alters the way an individual feels, thinks, and behaves. Despite the idea that it is a rare disorder its symptoms are very disabling and makes those suffering from it look as though they have no touch with reality. Patients with this illness have visuals and hear sounds that are not there in real sense (Tsuang, Faraone, and Glatt 2011). Moreover, they believe that other people are in a position analyse and control their thoughts. Individuals suffering from schizophrenia converse about very weird or abnormal theories, which can make talking to them to be difficult.
The rate at which this disorder has affected men is slightly higher than at the rate it affects women. Most frequently, schizophrenia occurs in early adulthood or late puberty. Despite its rare occurrence among children, its awareness on childhood-onset is on the increase. In like the longest time possible scientists have believed schizophrenia sometimes runs in families.
However, there have been cases whereby an individual has been confirmed to have schizophrenia, yet they have no family member with the mental illness. On the other hand there are many individuals who come from a family with one or more members suffering from the illness yet themselves do not. Experts believe that the interactions between the aspects of an individual’s environment and genes trigger the development of schizophrenia. Some of these environmental factors are malnutrition before birth, complications during birth and psychosocial factors.
Additionally, scientists are of the idea that the imbalance in the multifaceted, interrelated chemical reactions of the brain involving the substance the brain cell uses to communicate to others have the potential of causing schizophrenia. Other minor causes of the disorder are when the brain undergoes change and development during adolescent and birth respectively.
Although inherited genes put an individual at risk of schizophrenia, it is the environmental factors that act on this defenselessness and trigger having the mental disorder. Much of the conducted research has pointed stress, especially during pregnancy or at a later stage of development as the chief environmental factors causing the illness. High levels of stress are believed to trigger this rare type of mental disorder as it increases the amount hormone cortisol the body produces.
- Davey & Graham & Dash, S & Meeten, F. 2014. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
- Tsuang & Ming, T & Stephen, V & Faraone & Stephen, J & Glatt. 2011. Schizophrenia.
- Tyrer & Peter, J. 2014. Models for Mental Disorder: Conceptual Models in Psychiatry.
- Weiser, P & Lucas, R & Becker, T & Kilian R, 2010. The physical co-morbidity of people with a mental disorder: variation, causes, risk factors and prevention strategies across 14 European countries.” European Psychiatry.
- “What Causes Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?”. 2013.