About 450 million people in the world suffer from a mental health condition. Mental health disorders are among the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide. Despite this, mental health conditions remain poorly understood.
With one in five people in the world estimated to be affected by a mental health condition at some point in their lives, it’s important to know how to identify emotional suffering and what can be done to be healthy.
In March 2015, the Campaign to Change Direction—a national initiative to change the culture of mental health in America—started. Aetna is a founding partner of the campaign, which encourages people to learn the five signs of emotional suffering to help those in need receive the support they deserve. Emotional health is just as important as physical health and together, we’re joining millions to make a difference.
Here is the Campaign to Change Direction’s Five Healthy Habits of emotional well-being.
Take care of yourself
Eating a well-rounded diet, sleeping enough and being active are activities that are important and critical to mental health.
Regular checkups for emotional well-being is as important as physical exams and dental appointments. Talk with your doctor, a counselor, a faith-based leader, family and friends to make sure you’re doing well emotionally.
Engage and connect wisely
Pay attention to relationships in your life to see if any are unhealthy.
Stress can heavily impact a person’s health. Left untreated, stress can make existing problems worse and cause other disease and conditions, according to the American Psychological Association. Find ways to help you reduce stress. Learn what works best for you: meditate, run, knit, dance, sing, write, walk, etc.
In 2017, Aetna Behavioral Health released Get Ahead of StressSM, a product that helps people reduce their stress and take better control of life’s circumstances. Available to everyone, Get Ahead of Stressgives people the opportunity to speak with a Life Balance Advisor to create a personalized de-stressing plan from the comfort and privacy of home. Unlimited access to the Resources for Living website is also available to anyone who signs up.
Aetna Behavioral Health also released the MindCheckSM online tool in 2016 to help people get a quick read on their emotional health. Also available to everyone, this online tool asks four simple questions and matches people to a color and level of distress to provide insight into their emotional health. They can learn how to maintain a positive outlook and find tips, articles and videos on a variety of topics such as relationships, fitness and nutrition, and more. An app version is available for download at no cost for AndroidTM and iPhone® mobile devices.
Know the Five Signs of emotional suffering
If you see the “five signs of emotional suffering” in someone you know, reach out to them. Connect with them and offer to help.