Studies show that mental health and addiction are frequently connected. At least half of people living with addiction have co-occurring disorders like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, many people living with co-occurring disorders are misdiagnosed, or their mood disorder goes undiagnosed for months or even years. A lack of access to safe mental healthcare can lead to self-medicating with drugs or alcohol. Luckily, dual diagnosis treatment programs are the leading approach to treating addiction and mental health at the same time.
If you or someone you love in the LGBTQ community needs mental health support, call La Fuente Hollywood today to learn about our dual diagnosis treatment program. Reach our staff now at 888.903.9898 to learn more about our programs and how to improve your mental health.
What Is Mental Health?
Mental health is the overall wellness of a person’s mood and mental state. Mental health exists on a spectrum and can change from moment to moment in the same way emotions change throughout the day. Good mental health is an overall state of well-being in which a person can safely cope with stress and difficult emotions. Unfortunately, many things can negatively affect mental health. In today’s fast-pasted culture, magazines, television, social expectations, and social media all play a role in mental health.
How Social Media Affects Mental Health
Social media has changed the way we engage with the world. Scrolling, clicking, and likes affect the brain similarly to drug and alcohol use. Algorithms provide dopamine hits as a person receives clicks, likes, and comments on their account. This dopamine reward or release of the pleasure chemical in the brain can lead to social media addiction.
At the same time, social media can negatively affect mental health by skewing perceptions of reality. Some may feel inadequate, like they are missing out, or experience hopelessness when scrolling through social media accounts. For those with pre-existing mood disorders, social media can increase symptoms. It can also lead to increased alcohol and drug consumption as a form of self-soothing.
How to Improve Your Mental Health
There is no quick fix to improving mental health. Each day presents new challenges and rewards. Here are a few ways to improve your mental health at home.
- Take a break from social media: Stopping social media use, or limiting time on social media, can quickly improve mental health.
- Spend more time outside: An increase in Vitamin D and a boost in serotonin can improve mental health and promote calm.
- Exercise: Process adrenaline and boosts endorphins with healthy exercise.
- Talk to a loved one: Conversation can help improve mental health and make people feel less alone.
- Eat balanced nutrition: A balanced diet is a key component to overall mental health.
- Draw, doodle, or color: Sometimes, self-expression through drawing can help people process difficult emotions without words.
- Practice mindful awareness: Mindfulness can help people remember emotions will pass.
These and other practices can help increase endorphins and decrease stress. Mindful exercises can bring you into the present moment and stop rumination on the past, future, or other people. Unfortunately, drugs and alcohol only provide temporary relief from mood disorders. In the long-term, drugs and alcohol can worsen symptoms and lead to other health problems.
We Know Mental Health Is Important at La Fuente
If you or someone in your life is ready to focus on mental health, La Fuente can help. Our Hollywood clinic serves the greater Los Angeles area with inpatient and outpatient care. We pair cutting-edge addiction therapy with dual diagnosis and therapies for holistic healing. Let La Fuente show you how to improve your mental health. To learn more about our dual diagnosis programs, call us today at 888.903.9898 to get started.