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Our Mental Health Blogs

The Effects of Stressful Life Events on My Mental Illness

The Effects of Stressful Life Events on My Mental Illness

Stressful life events such as moving, college, and motherhood can impact our mental health. It's important to learn how to cope with stressful events in life.

Stressful life events play an enormous role in mental health issues; the connection between stress and mental illness is strong. There have been a few stressful events in my life that have really affected my mental illness symptoms. Moving, college, and motherhood have had the biggest impact on me. Some of these events took place before I was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and bulimia, and some took place after. Here’s what happened and how I coped with these stressful life events.

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College Students with Mental Illness — Survival Tips

College Students with Mental Illness — Survival Tips

College students with mental illness experience greater challenges than their peers. Here are some tips for students with mental illness from a college grad.

Being a college student with mental illness can be challenging, but for many, it is well worth it. A few months ago, I wrote an article on the importance of persistence as a college student. Persistence in college helps greatly, but it takes more than that to succeed. There are many resources available to college students with mental illness and it’s also important to build a network of support, including mental health professionals, peers, mentors, family and friends.

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Being a Mom with Mental Illness: My Questions and Concerns

Being a Mom with Mental Illness: My Questions and Concerns

Being a mom with mental illness adds additional concerns to my role as a parent. Soon my daughter will have questions or we'll face stigma. What will I do then?

In 2016, my life changed forever when I became a mom for the first time, but my mental illness has made my new role as a parent sometimes challenging. I was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder 10 years before giving birth to our daughter, and I have been doing really well with medication for the last several years. Being a mom with a mental illness comes with additional parenting concerns specific to mental illness.

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How to Help Mental Illness Medications Work for You

How to Help Mental Illness Medications Work for You

Mental illness medication can be very beneficial when you take it correctly. Here are some tips on how to take mental illness medications to get the benefits.

For the past 10 years, mental illness medications have been an integral part of my recovery from schizoaffective disorder. Finding the right psychiatric medications and dosage was difficult at first. My medications now are very effective, but still occasionally need adjustment. I know the life I live now would never be possible without mental illness medications.

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Creative Outlets Enhance Your Recovery From Mental Illness

Creative Outlets Enhance Your Recovery From Mental Illness

You can enhance your recovery from mental illness by doing something creative. You can't 'get it wrong' when you use creativity in mental illness recovery.

Creative outlets enhance your recovery from mental illness and can have a remarkable effect on our emotional wellbeing, whether one has a mental illness or not. Art played an integral part early in my recovery from bulimia and schizoaffective disorder, and it remains a very important part of my life today. Art is my medicine, but any creative pursuit can enhance your recovery from mental illness.

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A Certified Peer Support Specialist’s Training Experience

A Certified Peer Support Specialist’s Training Experience

I completed certified peer support specialist training this year. Most states offer certified peer support specialist training. This is what it was like for me.

A certified peer support specialist is a person in mental health or addiction recovery that uses his or her personal experiences to connect with and help others. I work for a community mental health agency where I provide emotional support and knowledge of resources to others in recovery. Being a certified peer support specialist allows me to give back to my community.

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Finally Asking for Help with My Anxiety Feels Good

Finally Asking for Help with My Anxiety Feels Good

I am finally asking for help with my anxiety, and I feel better already. My husband and doctors took my asking for help with anxiety as a strength, and it is.

I have been struggling for a while, but asking for help with my anxiety hasn’t really been important to me. But when I look back at my life and the things that I’ve done, I notice my anxiety symptoms become progressively worse year after year. My husband has been encouraging me to ask for help for the anxiety, and I finally brought it up to my therapist and psychiatrist.

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Volunteering Aids Your Recovery From Mental Illness

Volunteering Aids Your Recovery From Mental Illness

Volunteering aids your recovery from mental illness in many ways. Here's how volunteering can get you through tough spots in mental illness recovery.

Volunteering aided my recovery from mental illness when I was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and bulimia in my early 20s. I volunteered for my local National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) chapter, and it soon became a great opportunity that helped me take back my life and even lead to an internship. Here are five ways that volunteering can aid mental illness recovery that I discovered during my time at NAMI.

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My Life Before and After Starting Antipsychotic Medication

My Life Before and After Starting Antipsychotic Medication

Before starting antipsychotic medication I suffered from debilitating psychosis. Since starting antipsychotic medication, I've felt more in control of my life.

I started antipsychotic medication in my 20s as in my late teens and early 20s, my life was consumed by psychotic symptoms; it was isolating and scary. I suffered from auditory and visual hallucinations. I didn’t even know I was sick, but when I was eventually diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, it came as a relief. Knowing it was an illness made it less frightening, and taking medication was life-changing. I was free and ready to pursue my dreams. Here’s a look at my life before and after starting antipsychotic medication.

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Could You Use the FMLA to Help Your Mental Illness Recovery?

Could You Use the FMLA to Help Your Mental Illness Recovery?

Applying for FMLA to aid your mental illness recovery can give you time off work beyond vacation and sick days. I applied for FMLA. Consider it for yourself.

Have you considered using the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to help your mental health recovery? Many people with mental illnesses are employed, but working with a mental illness can be challenging. Stress can cause symptoms to break through, and there may be times when you need time off. Would your supervisor be supportive? Could you apply for benefits under the FMLA to help your mental illness recovery?

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