Category Archives: Mental Health

Effects of COVID-19 on Mental Health

Effects of COVID-19 on Mental Health

COVID-19 has been at the forefront of the news for well over a year. The global pandemic has turned the world upside down creating a strange new normal. Unfortunately, the effects of the virus, face masks, social distancing, job loss, or school closures have taken a toll. While the effects of COVID-19 on mental health may not be immediately visible, the stress and strain of the virus are present for many people. 

How does COVID affect your mental health?

The stress of facing the mounting challenges can take a toll on one’s physical, emotional, and/or mental health. Since the start of the pandemic, there has been a dramatic increase in adults who report mental health or substance abuse issues.

COVID-19 implications for mental health

While the public health efforts to avoid getting infected with the coronavirus may help keep you physically healthy, the social distancing and quarantining can also make one feel lonely or isolated. The lack of social contact with others can also add to one’s stress or anxiety.

Depression

Mental illness is not just a side effect of living through the pandemic. Research now shows that half of those who have contracted COVID report depression as a side effect. Unfortunately, for many, the symptoms of major depression may last for months beyond the initial infection.

Anxiety

When lockdowns were lifted and COVID numbers initially declined, many people were ready to re-enter the world and resume a sense of normalcy. For others, the idea of stepping back into the thick of things and mixing with other people brings a sense of fear and anxiety. COVID anxiety syndrome has become a new phenomenon as people navigate how to return to normal with their fear of contracting a highly contagious illness.

Substance abuse

In addition to the increase in depression and anxiety, many adults reported changes in their eating and sleeping patterns. Others have noted increases in alcohol consumption and substance abuse. For example, research shows that substance abuse in young adults increased from 13% to 25% amid COVID-19. Speaking with a provider can help manage substance use during a difficult time.

Tips to protect your mental health

tips to protect your mental health amid covid-19

The first part of protecting yourself against the impacts of the pandemic is understanding that it is natural to feel stressed or anxious sometimes. Consider the following tips to manage your stress and maintain your mental health:

1. Know the warning signs

Learning the warning signs of mental illness can help you seek out help for yourself or your loved ones. Be aware of the following:

  • Sleep changes
  • Appetite changes
  • Mood changes
  • Drop in functioning
  • Feeling disinterested
  • Withdrawal
  • Sensitivity
  • Problems focusing

2. Practice deep breathing

Breathing exercises are a great way to relax your body. Deep breathing relieves stress in the body because the deep breaths send a message letting your body know it is okay to calm down. Belly breathing is a simple way to start, and it can be done from anywhere.

3. Find an outlet for your stress

In addition to breathing exercises, finding an outlet for your stress can help keep overwhelming anxiety at bay. You can relieve your stress through exercise, meditation, yoga, personal time to yourself, eating healthy, and getting adequate sleep.

4. Lead a healthy lifestyle

Your mental health and overall health are connected. Being stressed about something that is beyond your control is not part of a healthy lifestyle. Stay positive, learn a new skill, set goals for yourself, rest, avoid unhealthy substances, have a good support system, maintain a good diet and exercise, and be mindful of yourself.

5. Seek professional help

If you or a loved one has tried the suggestions above but still feel something is off, don’t hesitate to seek help from a mental health professional

Contact Salveo Integrative Health for your mental health concerns

The expert team at Salveo Integrative Health offers behavioral and mental health services in Lawrenceville and Flowery Branch, GA, and telemedicine in North Carolina. Let our team help you protect your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. 

Contact us today!

The Role of Mental Health in Your Career

The Role of Mental Health in Your Career

In today’s world, many people lead busy lives. Between work, family, and social obligations, it is possible to carry a lot of stress and anxiety. An overload of responsibilities can take a toll on your mental health, especially if your profession is in a high-stress environment.

Professional tennis athlete, Naomi Osaka, faced an enormous amount of stress from the tennis industry and the media. The demands impacted her mental health, which was brushed off by those around her, and led her to briefly pull away from the tennis world. 

Professional athletes are not the only ones who experience the lack-of-understanding regarding mental health problems. The stigma surrounding mental health needs to be addressed, particularly in the workplace.

Mental Health and the Workplace

Let’s be honest, jobs can be tough and demanding, and, unfortunately, not all employers are accepting or understanding of mental health conditions. 

Ways Your Job Influences Your Mental Health

According to the CDC, 18.3% of US adults reported diagnosed mental illnesses in 2016, yet 71% experienced symptoms of stress. Signs of stress can include headaches, nausea, feelings of anxiousness, chest pains, and more.

When it comes to your career, stress and mental health can impact your performance. You may be less productive or engaged in your work. You may withdraw from coworkers or limit your communication with others.

Mental illness, such as anxiety or depression, has been linked to higher rates of disability and unemployment. Your mental health can interfere with your capacity to perform physical and cognitive tasks.

Effects of a Toxic Work Environment

Most of us spend the better part of our day working or focused on our careers. Working in a toxic or overly demanding environment that harms your health, happiness, or well-being can impact your mental health. The effects can leave you feeling tired, drained, anxious, or nervous. It can take a toll on your physical wellness too.

The effects of a poor work environment are not only seen from 9-5 or during the typical work hours. The results extend into your personal time too. You may experience feelings of low self-esteem and exhaustion or have conflicts with your friends and family.

When your mental health is affected, it is hard not to bring the effects of work home with you.

What to Do When Your Job Harms Your Mental Health

If your career is taking a toll on your well-being, consider the following steps to protect your mental health:

1. Practice Self-Care

Your mental well-being should be as much of a priority as your physical wellness. Taking care of yourself isn’t selfish; it is self-care. Focus on yourself by:

  • Exercising
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Finding a way to relax and relieve your stress
  • Find a provider for talk therapy at a clinic like Salveo Integrative Health

2. Speak Up

Don’t be afraid to speak up for yourself. Don’t make decisions that negatively impact your mental health. Advocate for your mental health, even if you are under pressure from your employer.

3. Set Boundaries

“No” is not just a word, but it is also a sentence. It is okay to say no and set boundaries when your mental health is on the line.

4. Maintain a Strong Support System

Surround yourself with friends, loved ones, and co-workers that you can lean on for support or a listening ear. A good support system is important for your recovery and your self-esteem. It can keep you from withdrawing into yourself and further damaging your delicate mental health. 

5. Remain Professional

When your mental wellness is at risk, you may feel negative, frustrated, or angry. Throughout everything, maintain a sense of professionalism. Don’t lower your standards or stoop to a lower level, even if those around you do. 

You will gain more respect and advocate for your cause better when you stay professional.

6. Leave

Unfortunately, even the best intentions and efforts do not always work in making a change in the workplace. If leaving your job is the only option you see, speak to a friend, family member, or mental health professional before making that leap. No one can make the decision for you or know what is right. However, your job should help you feel fulfilled rather than destroying your mental health.

How Companies Can Support Mental Health

It’s no coincidence that some companies maintain high morale and great performance rates from staff members. These organizations are committed to establishing a healthy work environment that promotes psychological wellness, open communication, and self-care. When employees feel respected, they are more likely to respect their bosses and perform at a higher level.

To support mental health among their employees, companies can learn more about mental health to understand how it affects employees and include mental health care within the benefits packages. Promote open communication to reduce the stigma and help employees gain access to mental health resources. 

Your employees are your most important assets and resources. Protect their mental and physical well-being.

Salveo Integrative Health can help you manage your job-related mental health stress. We provide mental health services in Lawrenceville and Flowery Branch, GA. We also provide telepsychiatry services throughout Georgia and North Carolina

Contact us today for help taking control of your mental health.

Mental Health Month: Tools to Thrive

Mental Health Month: Tools to Thrive

For years, there has been a stigma surrounding mental health. Many people have brushed it aside or have chosen not to talk about it. That only results in people hiding or feeling ashamed of their personal struggles without realizing they aren’t alone. 

This month, we are saying “no more” to the silence around mental health! 

Here, we will provide a general understanding of mental health, warning signs of a problem, and strategies for coping with mental illness.

May Is Mental Health Awareness Month

This is the time to raise awareness about mental health. We can establish an understanding of the pain and struggles felt by all who endure the daily challenges of mental health issues. This is the time to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness. 

For 2021, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is amplifying the message “You Are Not Alone.” Nearly 1 in 5 American adults live with mental illness.

No, you certainly are not alone.

In fact, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the number of self-reported behavioral health symptoms and worsening depression, anxiety, and stress.

Mental Health vs Mental Illness

Your mental wellness affects your daily life, how you function, and your overall health. 

What Is Mental Health?

Your mental health refers to your personal emotional, social, and psychological wellness. Mental health influences your action, how you relate to others, how you think and feel. It is just as important in childhood as adulthood.

What Is Mental Illness?

Mental illness refers to mental, behavioral, or emotional disorders affecting a person’s mood, behavior, or thinking. Disorders may range from mild to severe. Common mental health conditions include anxiety, depression, substance abuse disorders, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and addictive behaviors.

Warning signs of a mental health problem include: 

  • Eating or sleeping changes
  • Pulling away from loved ones
  • Having little energy
  • Feeling hopeless or as if nothing matters
  • Having severe mood swings
  • Fighting with others
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Thinking of harming oneself or others

If you or someone you know has signs or symptoms of mental illness, consult a mental health professional for diagnosis and treatment.

Tips for Coping with Mental Illness

If you, a friend, or a loved one has been diagnosed with mental illness, you must process the diagnosis and learn how to live with it. Mental health affects everyone, regardless of diagnoses. There is no requisite necessary to speak with a therapist. 

At Salveo Integrative Health, our experienced mental health providers are available to help with your mental health concerns. Mental health care can be both preventative and reactive. In either case, the goal is to help patients thrive in their daily lives.

The following tips can be added to your mental health toolbox as you learn to navigate your mental illness and thrive:

Acceptance

A large part of a mental health journey includes a path toward acceptance. Accepting your diagnosis and your illness is a step toward self-love, strength, and wisdom. You must take responsibility for your health care and hold yourself accountable for your actions. Understand that you have choices and can take one step at a time toward healing and treatment. 

Your mental and physical health are connected. Accepting and taking control of your mental health diagnosis and treatment is a step toward a healthier body.

Deep Breathing

Have you ever noticed your breathing when you are relaxed? It is slow and even.

One of the best ways to manage your stress or problems is through breathing exercises. When you take deep breaths, messages are sent to the brain to calm down and relax. In turn, messages are sent throughout the body to decrease your heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure.

Breathing exercises can help you relax and can be done anytime and anywhere when you feel stressed or anxious. 

Cognitive Reframing

Cognitive or mental reframing is a technique for creating a new way of looking at a person or situation to change its meaning. In therapy, this can help someone take on a new perspective or see from a different point of view. You may ask questions, validate your emotions, or develop compassion for yourself.

When it comes to working through your own mental health, cognitive reframing can turn problems or negative thoughts into opportunities for growth. Don’t focus on limitations. Focus on your choices.

Seek Professional Help

Your mood or behavior should not interfere with your ability to work, interact with others, or function daily. 

If you feel your mental health slipping or experience lingering changes in your mood or behavior, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. At Salveo Integrative Health, we offer mental health treatment in Lawrenceville and Flowery Branch, GA. Additionally, our team provides telepsychiatry services throughout Georgia and North Carolina.

Contact Salveo Integrative Health

For Mental Health Awareness Month, help us increase awareness of the importance of mental health. Take control of your mental health care this month and beyond!

Contact Salveo Integrative Health today!

the difference between mental and behavioral health

What Is the Difference Between Mental and Behavioral Health?

When it comes to mental health care and therapy, some terms are used interchangeably. Behavioral health and mental health are two terms that are used interchangeably but have separate definitions and purposes.

What is behavioral health?

What is mental health?

What are examples of each?

What is a behavioral health doctor?

Read on to learn more about the differences between mental and behavioral health.

Behavioral Health vs. Mental Health

The biggest differentiation between the two terms is that behavioral health is a blanket term that encompasses mental health.

Defining Behavioral Health

Behavioral health relates to the connection between your behavior and the health of your mind, body, and spirit. It is the way your habits affect your mental and physical health and wellness. 

What Are Examples of Behavioral Health?

Behavioral health disorders include substance abuse, eating disorders, gambling addiction, and sex addiction. Each of these conditions stems from destructive behaviors. In children, behavioral health disorders may include ADHD, Asperger’s syndrome, and autism. 

Behavioral health disorders involve a pattern of disruptive or destructive behavior that lasts several months or more. It isn’t a spur-of-the-moment action, but rather a pattern that has built up over time.

Professional behavioral health services may be needed to help the patient overcome these disorders and behaviors.

Defining Mental Health

Mental health refers to a person’s emotional, social, and psychological wellness. It affects how we think and feel, how we act, how we relate to others or handle stress. Mental health is important from childhood through adulthood.

What Are Examples of Mental Health?

Mental illness or mental health conditions refer to disorders of an individual’s mood, behavior, or thinking. Mental health disorders include anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and addictive behaviors.

Is a Behavioral Disorder a Mental Illness?

While mental disorders are behavioral disorders, not all behavioral issues are mental illnesses. 

Behavioral health is the blanket term that includes mental health. For mental disorders or illnesses, internal psychological or physiological factors dominate. In behavioral conditions, external or sociological factors play a role.

What Is a Behavioral Health Doctor?

A behavioral health doctor looks at and addresses the “behaviors” that caused a specific disorder or condition.

There are a number of therapists and doctors who provide mental and behavioral health treatment. You need to find the one who offers the right type of therapy for you. Psychiatrists, psychologists, holistic doctors, and primary care physicians can offer treatments for mental and behavioral health concerns.

Behavioral and Mental Health Care

At Salveo Integrative Health, we have a team of psychiatrists, therapists, and nurses who specialize in behavioral and mental health services. We provide care in a comfortable, relaxing atmosphere so that families and individuals can find tranquility while focusing on their needs.

In addition to psychiatry and counseling services, we provide treatment anxiety; depression; substance abuse; behavioral health issues; LGBTQ concerns; grief; and more. 

Salveo Integrative Health

For mental and behavioral health care in Lawrenceville, GA, Flowery Branch, GA, or North Carolina, contact the team at Salveo Integrative Health.

Contact Salveo Integrative Health today!

tips to improve your mental health in 2021

Tips to Improve Your Mental Health in 2021

Let’s be honest. 2020 was challenging. The year brought about changes, obstacles, and a new “normal” for everyone. For many, the rollercoaster year added unnecessary stress and problems affecting mental health in many ways.

Importance of Mental Health

Your mental health includes your emotional, psychological, and social health. It affects how you think, feel, act, respond to stress, relate to others, and more. Your mental health impacts your everyday life and plays a role in your overall health.

Individuals with mental illnesses such as depression are at risk of physical health problems such as stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. Similarly, poor physical health can increase the risk of mental illness.

This year, take charge of your mental and overall health. Read on to discover the impact your mental health has on your body and a few simple tips to improve your mental health in 2021.

Ways to Improve Your Mental Health

Value Yourself

Your self-esteem is how you perceive and value yourself. Low self-esteem is not a mental health problem itself. However, if your self-esteem has been negatively impacted for a long period of time, it can lead to problems such as anxiety and depression.

Improving yourself in any way first starts by valuing yourself, knowing you are important, and promising to take the necessary steps to take care of yourself. Treat yourself with respect and kindness. Find a hobby. Take the time to focus on yourself!

exercise to take care of your physical and mental health

Take Care of Your Body

As mentioned above, your physical and mental health are connected. To help improve your physical well-being and increase your energy levels, maintain the following habits:

  • Eat healthy foods
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Exercise daily
  • Get enough quality sleep
  • Avoid cigarettes
  • Minimize your alcohol use and avoid non-prescribed drugs

relieve your stress

Find an Outlet for Stress

Stress! With busy lifestyles, demanding jobs, family obligations, and the current global pandemic, stress is weighing on many people. The important point is to find an outlet so that you do not become overwhelmed and overcome by stress. Exercise. Do yoga. Practice deep breathing. Set aside time for yourself. 

Whatever you choose to do, set aside time each day to unwind in order to protect your mental and physical health. 

set realistic goals to maintain your mental health

Set Realistic Goals

Too often people set unrealistic expectations for themselves and they burn out or get frustrated. Consider the following tips when setting your goals:

  • Start small with one or two things to accomplish each day. Then, build from there. 
  • Determine your short- versus long-term goals.
  • Be SMART. Establish specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time-based goals.
  • Lay out your plan in smaller pieces or in steps.
  • Track your progress.
  • Do it with a friend or partner so someone can encourage you and hold you accountable.
  • Stay positive!

salveo integrative health in flowery branch and lawrenceville ga

Seek Help

If you feel your mental health slipping or are struggling with anxiety, depression, or substance abuse issues, don’t wait. Instead, seek help from a psychiatrist in Lawrenceville or Flowery Branch, GA.

Salveo Integrative Health is a team of psychiatrists, nurses, therapists, and mental health professionals. Our comfortable, relaxing atmosphere allows families and individuals to find tranquility while focusing on their needs.

In addition to psychiatry and counseling services, we provide treatment and therapies for anxiety; depression; substance abuse; behavioral health issues; LGBTQ concerns; grief; and more. Contact Salveo Integrative Health today!