When we think of mental illnesses, we think of something that we can’t see and is just located in the brain, and this isn’t always true. For many people their mental illness can manifest physically at times. Over the past few weeks, we have looked at how external factors can impact our mental health but what about our mental health impacting our physical health?
Stress isn’t something new. With around 15% of Australians experiencing high or very high levels of psychological stress (according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics)and it can be seen as modern society’s illness. While stress is often seen as a bad thing, we need it to survive, and it can be a good thing; keeping us alert when we sense danger and keeping us motivated. However, when we deal with stress for prolonged periods, it can have negative impacts. Many things cause us stress, from work to busy schedules to family drama. How we choose to deal with stress varies on the person, with many people turning to unhelpful coping mechanisms, also known as vices.
In 2020 Covid hit our shores with it bringing lockdowns, isolation, panic buying, masks, fear and uncertainty. It also brought a time for the world to heal, with it giving scientists a once in a lifetime opportunity to observe what happens when you take humans out of the world and see animals reclaim what was once theirs.
David Attenborough was barely able to contain his excitement in his documentary The Year Earth Changed looked in-depth at the positive impact Covid had on the world due to all the lockdowns and reduced travel.
Imagine this you are in the doctor’s office wanting treatment for your mental illness and they suggest that there’s this new treatment on the market that’s showing great response and doesn’t require you taking a pill once a day. You’re curious about it and it’s then that they mention it’s it called psilocybin or magic mushrooms, you give it a go and to your surprise it works. While this may seem, farfetched this could be a reality in the not to distance future. With the Australian government recently investing $15 million in grants to research this.
It’s the season for stress, ask anyone and they will be stressed about something whether that is work, family stuff or general end of year stuff they will be stressed in some area of their life. But what is stress? Is it the same as anxiety? And how can we prevent it?