Mental Hygiene 101


Depression deepens the mind; mania sharpens it.
Depression comes in all colors, flavors, degrees and nuances, but it has several characteristics that show up in most types that I have found: there is a compromised ability to concentrate, there is introspective thinking and there is doubt, regret and guilt present while experiencing this mood.
Mania, however, although it also comes in individual manifestations, it often is characterized by a heightened ability to concentrate; poor judgment, or an inability of the superego to filter thoughts and actions; heightened awareness and heightened creativity.
It is critical while experiencing these moods to stay away from mood-altering chemicals like alcohol and caffeine and to take any prescribed medications exactly as they have been prescribed. If you are not under a doctor’s care, you should seek medical attention if you can’t control your own actions or you are suicidal or homicidal. Of course, the writer realizes that if you are in the midst of a crisis yourself, you will not be able to discern these criteria. Therefore, if a caregiver notices these signs in someone he or she loves, let him or her use this as a guide.
What I recommend for someone suffering episodes of this nature, is that the sufferer get plugged into a community of people who will love, nurture and respect the individual, and whom the individual can come to love, nurture and respect in return.


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