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What to do if you have mental illness in your family, like Bruce Springsteen



The mental illness can affect anyone at any age, but we know that families with mental illness more often develop disease themselves. And apparently Bruce Springsteen is no exception. The iconic rocker revealed in a recent interview that he has both a family and a personal history with a mental illness – and that he pays great attention to how he cares about his mental health as a result. Springsteen, 69, told Esquire that his father was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia as an adult and that he personally had what Esquire at the age of 32 and again in his 60s a "collapse" which contained symptoms of "agitated depression". "Although Springsteen does not reveal much about his personal mental health problems, he says he has been in therapy for over three decades – and worried about receiving a diagnosis like his father.

" I came close enough [mental illness] where I know I'm not feeling well myself, "he said," I've had to deal with it a lot over the years, and I have various medications that keep me on a straight keel. Otherwise I can swing quite dramatically and … just … the wheels can come a bit. So we have to watch in our family. I have to take care of my children, and there I was lucky. It went away in front of my father in my family. "

In fact, many people Those with close family members with a mental illness are wondering if this could interfere with the likelihood of eventually being diagnosed.

Yes, mental illnesses may be due to your environment and genetics [19659010] "If you have a mental illness in the past, you have a higher risk of developing it yourself," says Farha Abbasi, MD, assistant professor of psychiatry at Michigan State University, to SELF. " But that does not mean you will. "

The exact cause of mental illness is not well understood, but we know that social, genetic, and environmental factors all play a role, Aubrey Moe, Ph.D. Psychologist at Ohio State University's Wexner Medical Center, SELF says, "Although there is a hereditary component, it's only one part, and it is It's hard to say if anyone contributed to a person's genetics or environment, "she explains. "Usually it's an interaction of both."

That means it's quite likely that you have depression, anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder in the family but you never get yourself a mental illness. Or you have an increased risk of mental illness However, in the family medical history, symptoms only appear when they are triggered by a specific event (for example, loss of a job or the death of a close relative) or when you are exposed to extreme stress.

Family members with mental illness There is no guarantee that you will develop one, but there are some important ways to prepare yourself for the opportunity.

There is no blood test that determines whether or not you are carrying a gene that increases your risk of renewing the mental condition, Dr. Abbasi. All you need to know is your family history.

The first step, of course, is to encourage your older family members to be open about all the mental health issues they are dealing with or of their family members. Given the stigma that a mental illness has had and still has in the past, it is understandable that your parents or older family members may not feel very comfortable talking about it. But treat a mental illness like any other illness, such as heart disease or cancer, and especially ask when talking to you about your family history.

And as with these other illnesses, you should be as detailed as possible with it. The mental illness in your family is crucial. "You need to understand your risk and gather as much information as possible about how the disease is in your family, how it presents itself, and how severe it is," says Dr. Abbasi. "This awareness is half the battle."

From there, you can educate yourself and your immediate family on the symptoms of your family's mental health problems, Moe says. That way, you and your family know when you have symptoms that you need to look out for and can get active sooner. For example, "if it's a condition like schizophrenia, you may not notice the symptoms, but family members may be able to detect this," Dr. Christian Kohler, clinical director of the University of Pennsylvania's Neuropsychiatry / Schizophrenia Research Center, says SELBST. They can then encourage you to seek help if you show symptoms that even you may not know are an indication of an underlying problem, he explains.

It is also a good idea to share these details with your physician psychologist (if you are working with a person) so that she can also look for symptoms of those mental illnesses that you may not find, such as: Changes in your sleep, eating habits or patterns of exercise. In addition, it is especially important that you maintain the basic self-care practices that move well, exercise regularly, and regularly [269905] have good night sleep . It also means being aware of your alcohol and drug use, as both can help to cause or increase mental health problems, says dr. Moe.

If your family history of mental illness is severe and you are particularly worried, then it is perfectly safe to undergo preventive therapy that will help you develop healthy coping skills for stress that will inevitably come in the future will occur, says dr. Abbasi. "It does not mean you will not face fighting or develop a mental health problem, but it can help you to function and cope better when you develop symptoms or are experiencing stress," she says. However, be aware that psychiatric treatment without specific diagnosis (or even if you have one) may not be covered by insurance .

And finally, thinking does not hurt the next steps, Dr. Abbasi. In fact, it is helpful to have a plan for what you do and which mental health professionals you are talking to if you notice symptoms in yourself or your children.

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