Monthly Archives: August 2021

benefits of mental health counseling

Benefits Of Mental Health Counseling

The benefits of therapy not only attribute to an improved state of mind but also positively impact how you live your life. Most individuals believe they don’t require mental health therapy. However, you may be surprised to learn the benefits of mental health counseling can drastically improve your productivity, focus, and overall happiness. 

Those who suffer from mental health disorders are often strong individuals. Because of this, many falsely think being strong means keeping it to themselves. The fact is, it takes an even stronger person to share those struggles with another.

Mental Health Therapy Brings Self-Acceptance

This is often the first step of progress for anyone who suffers from mental health. Embracing yourself and your problems allows you to confront individual struggles. Also, understanding that therapy is very common and nothing to be ashamed of is a key step in accepting help. 

Everybody has problems to varying degrees. It is not just those with co-occurring conditions that require therapy. Refusing help or therapy by way of denial, however, often leads to deeper depression and worsening mental health conditions. This is why self-acceptance is vitally important. Accepting who you are, allows you to accept help. Accepting help can then become the gateway to reaping the benefits of therapy.

You’ll Gain Peace Of Mind

The stresses of mental health disorders are exacerbated by the fact that you fall captive to the danger of your thoughts. Most patients are critical thinkers, often overthinking themselves into deeper issues within their minds. Therapy is necessary for that third party to pull us out of the prison our minds can pose. Opening the door of your thoughts to a therapist is key to freeing yourself.

Once you are able to gain insight into someone else’s perspective, you’ll start to view yourself differently. A therapist can bring you a calm sense of peace.  

There Will Be Noticeable Physical Improvement

An old proverb states “As a man thinketh in his mind deviate so is he.” To simplify, thinking good means feeling good, the same way thinking bad means feeling worse. In psychology today, Ron Breazeale, a clinical psychologist states, “Our thoughts influence our bodies directly because the body interprets the messages coming from the brain to prepare us for whatever is expected.” Therefore, your brain is going to tell your body how you should feel based on how you’re thinking.

For those suffering from mental health disorders, this is crucial to overall health and wellness. Counseling can benefit your physical health by training you to eliminate negative thoughts which will translate to positive health. 

Overall Support That Provides Relief from Mental Illness

One of the greatest benefits of therapy is it provides you with a mental support coach. This negates the feeling of being alone in your battle. This alone can help relieve depression and anxiety. 

This is important, considering many who struggle with their mental health keep their thoughts and emotions bottled up. Contained thoughts and emotions are among the worst things for mental health. Having someone in your corner is one of the critical benefits of therapy, diminishing the loneliness many feel in their struggle.

Improved Social And Work Efficiency

An improved state of mind and refined communication skills produces a trickle-down effect on your daily life. A newfound sense of confidence will ignite a drastic development in your social and work discretion. Since our mental outlook greatly affects our daily activities, our minds can be our greatest asset or enemy. Among the numerous benefits of mental health, counseling can be your ticket to a greater all-around life.

What Available Types Of Therapy Benefit the Most?

Simply with action on your behalf, all of the mental health counseling provided can benefit tremendously. Below is an in-depth layout of the proposed therapeutic benefits by category. 

Anxiety

There are a variety of beneficial therapy options specifically geared towards treating, diminishing, and even eliminating your anxiety. Anxiety counseling, much like the other therapeutic benefits listed, requires the assistance of another to alleviate that burden.

Sharing that burden with a therapy expert will aid you in lifting that weight off your shoulders. Carrying that weight on your own will only magnify your burden.

Stress Or Trauma-Related Disorders

If you feel overwhelmed by your everyday activities or an induced trauma from your past, mental health counseling is essential. Trauma-related disorders often go unnoticed because the bearer of these burdens has been harboring them for a significant amount of time. Whether because of embarrassment or disdain for rehashing specific incidents, you then are in bondage to that trauma. 

This is where the true benefits of mental health counseling magnify themselves most. You can free yourself from your trauma-induced bondage by confidentially confiding with a specialist who will gladly listen and understand. Speaking openly with a therapist often reveals how much more burden it is to suppress these traumas, rather than to open up. Furthermore, many cases of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) are undiagnosed due to a refusal or denial to seek counseling.

Depression Disorders

This can come as a result of neglecting help with other disorders or standalone. Regardless of the circumstance, depression disorders cannot be handled alone.

Depression implants a false mentality of diminished or zero self-significance. A mental health counselor can help reestablish the truth of self-worth that would have otherwise been absent.

Personality Disorders

Lido Wellness Center defines personality disorders as “unhealthy patterns of thinking, functioning, and behavior that deviate from the expectations of the culture.”

These discrepancies can cause as equally a toll emotionally as they do mentally. As strong as you are, personality disorders will crumble the strongest of individuals without the aid of a mental health expert.

Get Mental Health Therapy At Lido Wellness Today! 

All mental health conditions possess one common theme, they require the support of a therapeutic professional who cares. The compassionate experts at Lido Wellness Center have all the support and tools you need to manage, and in many cases, overcome your condition.

Each moment that passes without the care you need, is another battle lost to mental health. Your decision at this moment could easily be the difference between your road to recovery and slipping farther away. The greatest news for you is the help you need is simply one click away. Contact our team of mental health professionals today. 

References

https://www.goodtherapy.org/benefits-of-therapy.html 

https://www.mhanational.org/therapy 

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mental health in sports

Mental Health In Sports: Why Is Depression Common In Athletes?

People all over the world watch professional athletes and admire their physical strength and commitment to their sport. We watch them break bones, tear muscles, and take hard falls. And everyone worries about the physical challenges of these injuries. However, the focus should be on depression and athletes and overall mental health in sports.  

2020 Olympics Highlight The Importance Of Mental Health In Sports

It’s not the medal-winning performances or world-record-breaking moments that highlight the 2020 Olympics. It is Simone Biles’s jaw-dropping decision to stop competing in the middle of the women’s gymnastic team event. 

As onlookers saw no physical injuries, fellow athletes rallied around her because they can relate to the mental challenges athletes face every day. People see athletes as role models and heroes, but they are human like everyone else. 

American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, while training for the Olympics, admitted to smoking legal cannabis to cope with the pain of losing her birth mother. The pressure of the sport alone is overwhelming. However, adding a traumatic event can be more than a person can handle. 

While anyone can develop depression or anxiety, specific risk factors increase the risk of athletes with mental health issues. These risk factors include:

  • Injury
  • Overtraining
  • Losing competitions
  • Concussion
  • Retirement
  • The pressure of being in the public eye

Aware of the challenges young athletes face, the International Olympic Committee increased mental health resources. They established the “Mentally Fit Helpline” and had psychiatrists and psychologists in the Olympic village. 

Student Athletes and Mental Health Issues

On top of the practice and the pressure from coaches and parents, student athletes have homework and social lives. This is a lot of pressure put on teens and young adults. On top of all this, injuries happen. Although injuries typically heal, they can increase depression in athletes.

Athletes with mental health issues may:

  • Develop an eating disorder
  • Deal with burnout
  • Struggle with anxiety and depression

Sports are known for the “walk it off” and “toughen up” mentality. As a result, athletes young and old have kept their mental struggles a secret. But, Simone Biles has shown athletes and non-athletes that mental health is normal and nothing to be ashamed of. 

How Common are Athletes with Mental Health Issues?

Mental health struggles among athletes are more common than most people think. The more present and former athletes come forward with their struggle with depression and anxiety, the more we discover the importance of mental health in sports. 

For example, 34 percent of current professional athletes struggle with depression or anxiety. In comparison, 26 percent of former professional athletes also struggle with anxiety or depression. Theathletes with mental health issues general population struggles at a much lower rate of around 20 percent.

College athletes with mental health issues may ignore symptoms of depression until they worsen. As many as 24 percent develop clinical depression. While moderate to severe depression affects over 6 percent. However, only about 10 percent seek help. 

Recognizing Athletes with Mental Health Issues

It is essential to watch for signs of depression and other mental health disorders in your friends, family, and, most importantly yourself. Unfortunately, one in four people experience mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety. However, the added pressure of sports can increase the risk. 

Signs of depression in athletes include:

  • Poor performance
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Sadness
  • Lack of self-esteem
  • Fatigue
  • Failing to recover after injury
  • Loss of interest in fun activities
  • Isolation/withdrawal
  • Change in personality
  • Change in sleep pattern
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Problems concentrating
  • Alcohol abuse

Ignoring the signs and symptoms of depression in athletes can be life-threatening because untreated depression can lead to thoughts of suicide and self-harm. If you or someone you love is struggling with depression, it’s crucial to seek help immediately. 

Challenges Athletes Face That Leads To Depression

The pressure to do well in sports begins at a young age. And in the beginning, kids have fun and enjoy learning to play. But the pressure to have game-winning performances increases as kids hit high school. 

These pressures can lead to the following: 

Perfectionism 

While it is admirable to be dedicated and want to be perfect, we are all human, and the stress of perfectionism leads to more significant problems. Athletes often overtrain to improve their performance. However, this can lead to injuries. As a result, athletes may struggle with depression and feeling worthless.

Fear

Athletes often struggle with the fear of disappointing their families and coaches. They fear they are “not enough,” so they train harder. In addition, being in the public eye means everyone will see if they lose. 

Injuries

Every athlete’s worst fear is getting injured. Injuries can mean weeks or months in physical therapy. The inability to play, the worry over getting better, and the challenges of recovery can increase depression in athletes. 

Treating Mental Health In Sports

Many sports teams and coaches understand the struggles their players go through. Not only the physical struggles of the sport, but they also recognize the mental challenges of competition. 

The NBA, for example, developed programs and initiatives in 2015 that provide players with comprehensive mental health services. Each year they continue improving and being recognized as a leader in mental health around the world. 

How Can Psychotherapy Help Athletes With Mental Health Issues

Psychotherapy or individual therapy is crucial to treating any mental health disorder. Sitting down one-on-one with a therapist helps work through personal and professional issues without judgment. 

Treating mental health in sports can help athletes:

  • Improve performance
  • Heal past mental or physical trauma
  • Build self-esteem
  • Increase motivation
  • Cope with injuries
  • Improve communication
  • Set realistic goals
  • Develop self-care routines

An athlete generally has an excellent support team. However, an athlete may have a struggle they are ashamed to tell their coach or family. For this reason, psychotherapy offers privacy and confidentiality.

Don’t Struggle Alone Let Lido Wellness Help

If you or a loved one is struggling with depression or any mental health issue, it is crucial to seek help. We can help you find a balance between being the best and still making self-care a priority. Contact us today to find out more. 

References:

https://www.athletesforhope.org/2019/05/mental-health-and-athletes/

https://www.nfhs.org/articles/challenges-of-mental-health-issues-in-high-school-athletics?ArtId=257316

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Conquer Body Image Distress, Reclaim Your Summer (and Beyond!)

When I was nine years old, I dreaded going to the beach in the summertime. Visiting my grandmother’s beautiful home in Laguna Beach should have been exciting, fun, and carefree for a young California girl, but to me, the beach meant one thing. Wearing a swimsuit. Unlike other girls my age, my swim attire was not a floral patterned one-piece or two-piece. No, I armored up for the beach in a long sleeve rash guard and board shorts bought from the little boy’s section at Target.

It wasn’t a sunburn I was afraid of; it was my body. Somehow, at nine years old I had already internalized the message that my body was “bad” and “shameful.” I didn’t want strangers at the beach to see my body, but even more devastatingly, I didn’t want to see myself.

Sadly, internalizing body shame and body image distress at a young age is a pervasive issue in our

culture. With the rise of social media and platforms such as Instagram and TikTok, kids are gaining access to content earlier and earlier that perpetuates body dissatisfaction through comparison to unrealistic images. According to researchers Kearney-Cooke and Tieger, by 13 years old 50% of girls in the United States report being unhappy with their body; by 17, this number grows to 80%.

But make no mistake, body image issues are not just a “teenage girl phase.” These insecurities and crippling shame can follow us well into adulthood, and without the proper intervention, can even worsen as our bodies change in the natural aging process. Furthermore, in recent years we have seen a massive uptick in both male-identifying and transgender people struggling to accept their bodies. Significantly, body dysmorphia is only 0.03% less prevalent in men than women, and a shocking 16% of trans people have been diagnosed with an eating disorder.

As a therapist specializing in eating disorders and body dysmorphia, I have witnessed the devastating effects of body image distress on both mental health and physical health. Every summer, I notice a trend of increased anxiety in my patients. Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook are flooded with diet tips and workouts for attaining a “bikini body” before the weather heats up, leaving many of us triggered and on the path to disordered eating, depression, and isolation. You don’t need a formally diagnosed eating disorder or body dysmorphia to feel the effects of societal pressure to change and manipulate your body’s natural shape or size. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

In my work with patients in mental health treatment, I have found a few simple shifts in behavior and mindset go a long way in dispelling summertime stress and inviting enjoyment back into the warmer months. Not only that, but consistent and repeated practice can help cultivate a new and supportive relationship with your body that can last through fall, winter, and many seasons to come.

Unfollow, Block, Delete! – Take a look at your social media feeds. What accounts are you following right now that trigger comparison and body anxiety? Which influencers and images invoke a sense of guilt, unhealthy envy, and self-criticism? Is Susan from marketing posting about her juice cleanse again? Or maybe Bob from next door is posting his gym selfies for the tenth time this week.

This type of stimulus is not helpful. What’s worse, it’s selling a false narrative. What the influencers don’t show you is the photoshop app they use to reshape their bodies and the hours spent perfecting their angles and lighting. We also don’t get to see how cranky Susan is with her kids because she’s not properly nourishing her brain. And Bob isn’t going to post about his own body image dissatisfaction and anxiety that fuels his compulsive exercising.

On social media, we are fed information that tricks us into believing idealism is realism. This is harmful because it leaves us constantly striving to achieve something that does not exist and feeling shameful all the while because we can’t do the impossible. Take this opportunity to curate the content you’re consuming to support healthy body acceptance and neutrality. You don’t have to avoid social media completely to avoid triggering negative body image. There are actually several body positive and body neutral accounts that advocate for health at every size and self-acceptance. Keep an eye out for accounts that provide helpful suggestions for combating body shame and promote rejecting diet culture rather than rejecting your body.

Looking for body positive accounts to follow? Try @iweigh, @alissarumseyrd, and @mynameisjessamyn.

Practice Makes Progress – Not comfortable wearing your swimsuit to the beach? Practice wearing it around your house first! This may seem like a strange thing to do but getting comfortable in a safe place is the first step toward feeling comfortable on a beach full of strangers. Remember, you are probably judging yourself much harder than anyone else would.

While feeling positive about your body might seem like a lofty and far-off goal, a more attainable goal might be body neutrality. If you can find even a moment of feeling neutral about your body in a swimsuit, that is progress. Practicing body neutrality means acknowledging and appreciating the function of your body, rather than the form. If we can shift the focus away from deriving worth from our appearance, and instead derive worth from the soul, we can reclaim peace knowing that we are worthy regardless of the body we live in.

Next time you put on your swimsuit, practice repeating this body neutrality mantra:

My body is one of the interesting things about me.

Talk It Out – Usually our body dissatisfaction and distress come from a deep core belief about who we are. While it’s easy to blame the size and shape of our bodies as the root of all problems, the body is not the real issue here. If body image distress is becoming a pervasive and preoccupying problem in your life, it may be time to reach out to a therapist or mental health treatment center, like Lido Wellness Center.

With the help of a treatment team it becomes easier to understand that the body doesn’t need to change, the mind does! In my work with patients, I prioritize deconstructing and challenging the narratives we’ve been taught to believe about our bodies. We work together to process through the stories and experiences throughout the lifetime that have contributed to these harmful core beliefs. When we take the time to say it out loud, we begin to hear and understand that the way we think and feel about our bodies often doesn’t originate from us. By tracking the history of our body image concerns, we can more easily identify the underlying cause. Very often, body image distress is a symptom of the real problem: trauma, fear, low self-worth, abuse, rejection, the list of possibilities goes on.

It can feel uncomfortable and scary, but talking about and processing through these deep rooted self-beliefs with a safe and supportive therapist can provide lasting relief. If we can move through the negative stories that have influenced our relationships with our bodies, we can change the narrative to claim stories that emphasize body empowerment and acceptance.

Though summertime is typically a season that heightens our body awareness and insecurities, tending to our bodies’ needs and elevating gratitude for the body year round is best practice for long term healing. While these tips are helpful, it’s important to recognize that there is no quick fix to healing your relationship with yourself and your body. I know from personal experience that like any other relationship, tending to the body and mind is a daily practice.

These days, my trips to the beach look a whole lot different. When I step onto the hot summer sand, I’m not thinking about my body or comparing myself to the other people on the beach. I’m witnessing the majesty of the ocean, I’m smelling the brisk salt air, I’m laughing with my friends and family, and I’m enjoying the taste and texture of my seafront picnic. Sometimes, I still hear whisperings from that little girl who was afraid to be seen, and in those moments I remind her this:
Your body is your home. It is the vehicle that lets you experience the world. Let’s be grateful to the body that allows us to participate in this beautiful life.

by Chloe Horner, AMFT
Primary Therapist

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The Positive And Negative Effects Of Social Media On Your Mental Health

Billions of people use social media every day. This has changed the way we communicate with each other. These days, the average user spends 2 hours and 16 minutes every day on social media platforms. Although social media has given us an open door to more information than ever before, there are good and bad effects on our mental health due to our use of this technology.

What Is Social Media?

In simple words, social media is a computer-based technology that facilitates sharing your ideas, thoughts, and information. This is done through the building of virtual networks and communities. People engage with social media through a computer, tablet, or smartphone by using web-based applications.

What Is Social Media’s Effect on Mental Health?

There has been substantial growth in the use of social media in recent years.There has been substantial growth in the use of social media in recent years. The Pew Research Center found that 72% of Americans in the U.S. use social media. However, since social media use is still relatively new, there aren’t any long-term studies recording the effects of social media. 

Still, several recent studies show that social media impacts mental health in several ways. As a result, the increasing dependence on the use of social media puts a large number of Americans at an increased risk for feeling: 

What Are The Positive And Negative Effects Of Social Media?

Positive: Increases our awareness 

One of the great benefits of social media is that a person or organization can quickly increase awareness of an important issue to a huge audience. More people are using social media every day to promote change and help make positive changes in the world.

Negative: May contribute to fake news.

Even though many social media platforms have taken steps to try to combat fake news, it hasn’t stopped the worldwide spread of misinformation. Anyone with a computer or smartphone can share information with a massive audience and when used with bad intentions, it can have bad results.

Positive: It can help combat loneliness

Humans are social creatures with a need to socialize and connect with other people. Frequently, social media is blamed for replacing face-to-face communication. However, for some, social media is a way to promote conversations with like-minded people and build friendships. A recent survey showed that 70% of senior citizens are using social media to stay in touch with family, friends, and the outside world.

Negative: It can increase the feelings of loneliness and isolation

According to something called “social displacement theory,” the more time people spend on social media, the less time they are likely to spend face-to-face socializing. Although social media was meant to increase social interactions,  a survey found that those people who spent more time on social media every day felt lonelier than people who checked their social media less. Despite social media bringing people together digitally, it could be risking our in-person relationships and increase feelings of disconnection and isolation.

Positive: It makes you feel like you are not alone and part of a community 

It’s very typical to feel hesitant about talking to family and friends about health issues. But with so many health services and information available online, social media can give a person a safe space to ask questions and connect to a slew of health resources. For people living in a remote or rural area, social media is an inexpensive and usable option for getting help by providing resources to people who may not have access any other way.

Negative: It may support antisocial behavior

When it’s not used properly, social media can have unhealthy consequences for your mental health. If social media takes the place of any face-to-face interactions, it increases the likelihood of antisocial behavior. Although meant to bring us together, when social media is used incorrectly it can lead us to compare our lives with other peoples’ and have a hurtful impact on our well-being. Social media tends to only show the best parts of someone’s life. So, if you spend too much time looking at misleading or biased content, it can make you feel deficient in some way and cause serious psychological and physical problems including self-esteem.

Positive: It creates and maintains relationships

Because social media has changed the way we communicate with each other, it has changed how we make and preserve relationships. It is not only a useful tool for individuals who are looking for other people who share their views and have similar interests. It also provides an opportunity to meet and stay in touch with people from all over the world.

Negative: Cyberbullying

Even though social media creates opportunities to meet like-minded people and can help to support positive relationships and discussions, cyberbullying and trolling are major contributors to feelings of anxiety and depression. Cyberbullying is the use of technology to harass, bully, and intimidate another person. A recent study discovered that cyberbullying is associated with depression and suicide among teenagers. Furthermore, reports are suggesting that cyberbullying is increasing. Sadly, it’s an ongoing issue that is difficult for social media platforms to reduce.

Your feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness are increasing sharplySigns That Social Media Is Affecting Your Mental Health

  • It distracts you from work or homework.
  • You use it to escape from negative emotions.
  • You’re being cyberbullied or trolled.
  • You spend more time online than with your family and friends.
  • Your feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness are increasing sharply.

Social Media and Depression in Teens

The new research analyzed several studies of cyberbullying on social media and found that it is associated with depression in teenagers. Young people being victimized online has gotten a lot of attention, particularly after a series of suicides of teenagers who were bullied on various social networks.

The use of social media is common with teenagers, but the health effects of cyberbullying are mainly unknown. Regular, in-person bullying during the teen years may double the risk of depression in adulthood and the effects of bullying can be as bad as or worse than child abuse.

6 Tips To Protect Your Mental Health From Negative Effects Of Social Media

According to the American Psychiatric Association, more than one-third of adults in America believe social media is harmful to their mental health. And only 5% see it as being positive. Another 45% say it has both negative and positive effects. So here are 6 tips for protecting your mental health:

  1. Set a limit for when and where you use social media: You’ll have better connections with the people in your life if you set certain times each day when your notifications are off or your phone is in airplane mode.
  2. Have detox periods: Plan for regular multi-day breaks from social media. Several studies show that even a 5-day break from Facebook can lower your stress and improve your satisfaction with life. And you don’t have to go cold turkey. Just cutting back can result in lower loneliness and depression.
  3. Pay attention to what you do and how it makes you feel: Try using your favorite platforms for different amounts of time and at different times of the day. You may feel better after a few short spurts online than after 45 minutes or more.
  4. Use social media mindfully: Ask yourself why you’re using it. Are you trying to avoid something?
  5. Unfollow those who don’t serve a purpose: Take time to unfollow contacts or groups that are annoying or worse. Most won’t notice and your life will be better for it.
  6. Don’t let social media fool you, it’s not always realistic: Remember, most people post only what they want you to see on social media. Using platforms such as Facebook to keep up with friends and relatives is fine, but don’t let it be a replacement for in-person interactions.

Live Life, Don’t Just Read About It

Are you dealing with the negative effects of social media? Or are you dealing with depression and don’t know why? You know when you aren’t feeling quite right, whether it’s a result of social media or not. At Lido Wellness Center, we can work through this together and get you back to a more fulfilling life. 

Sometimes having a pre-existing mental condition can lead to substance abuse as a means to cope. At Lido Wellness Center, if you have developed multiple conditions, our dual diagnosis program can help treat your co-occurring disorder.  

Let us help you improve the way you feel and experience greater mental and emotional well-being. Contact us today. 

References

www.ontheline.org.au

www.livescience.com

www.investopedia.com

www.theconversation.com

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