Mental Health Care in Nigeria

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Mental illness is any disease or condition that influences the way a person thinks, feels, behaves, and/or relates to others and to his or her surroundings. Although the symptoms of mental illness can range from mild to severe and are different depending on the type of mental illness, a person with an untreated mental illness often is unable to cope with life's daily routines and demands. Mental illnesses can be put into two types - Psychoses and Neuroses. Psychoses: symptoms are normally severe, so much so that the person actually looses touch with the real world. People are usually not alert to the fact they are ill or their behavior is unusual. Neuroses: Symptoms are usually of less severity than psychoses, though they are disturbing for those involved. The person is still in touch with reality. They are aware of the fact they are ill and have some concerns over their health and their ill health Mental illness can either be Chronic - Lasts for a long time or starts slowly. Acute - short in duration, severe and sudden. List of mental disorders

Dementia
Depression
Panic Disorder
Social anxiety disorder
Generalized anxiety disorder
Agoraphobia
Bipolar disorder
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder.
ADHD
Parkinson's Disease
Huntington disease
Alzheimer's disease
Schizophrenia
Anorexia nervosa
Antisocial Personality Disorder
Autism
Borderline Personality Disorder
Rett Syndrome
Schizophrenia
Bulimia nervosa
Causes of Mental Illness
Although the exact cause of most mental illnesses is not known, it is becoming clear through research that many of these conditions are caused by a combination of genetic, biological, psychological, and environmental factors -- not personal Weakness or a character defect -- and recovery from a mental illness is not simply a matter of will and self-discipline. •Heredity (genetics): Many mental illnesses run in families, suggesting they may be passed on from parents to children through genes. Genes contain instructions for the function of each cell in the body and are responsible for how we look, act, think, etc. However, just because your mother or father may have or had a mental illness does not mean you will have one. Hereditary just means that you are more likely to get the condition than if you didn't have an affected family member. Experts believe that many mental conditions are linked to problems in multiple genes -- not just one, as with many diseases -- which is why a person inherits a susceptibility to a mental disorder but does not always develop the condition. The disorder itself occurs from the interaction of these genes and other factors -- such as psychological trauma and environmental stressors -- which can influence, or trigger, the illness in a person who has inherited a susceptibility to it. •Biology: Some mental illnesses have been linked to an abnormal balance of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters help nerve cells in the brain communicate with each other. If these chemicals are out of balance or are not working properly, messages may not make it through the brain correctly, leading to symptoms of mental illness. In addition, defects in or injury to certain areas of the brain also have been linked to some mental conditions. •Psychological trauma: Some mental illnesses may be triggered by psychological trauma suffered as a child, such as severe emotional, physical, or sexual abuse; a significant early loss, such as the loss of a parent; and neglect. •Environmental stressors: Certain stressors -- such as a death or divorce, a dysfunctional family life, changing jobs or schools, and substance abuse -- can trigger a disorder in a person who may be at risk for developing a mental illness. Unfortunately, most mental illnesses are caused by a combination of factors and cannot be prevented. How Common Is Mental Illness in Nigeria?

The problem we have in Nigeria is...
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