5 things that can affect your mental health

Mental health is a very important part of your well-being. But there’s a misconception that mental health issues only affect certain types of people. This is not true Choma! You might have experienced a low mood, felt overwhelmed and under pressure, or even scared or panicked but didn’t know how to explain it.  That’s because we’re human and we get affected by things and people around us. Take a quick look at the few things you didn’t know can affect your mental health.

Your level of daily activity 

Regular exercise is actually great for your mental well-being. When you’re active your body releases feel-good and motivation hormones (serotonin and dopamine) which has a huge impact on your mood.

Instead of sleeping or lounging all day, you should consider taking a brisk walk. You’re likely to have a boost of energy, improved mood, and motivation to complete that dreaded task.                        

Substance use 

We all know that alcohol, drugs, and smoking affects our brain. Which means that excessive consumption of these substances can affect your mental health, or even worsen any mental illness you might be experiencing already.  

If you find that you’re using these substances to function as a coping mechanism, it might be a good idea to consider getting help to address the root of the problem.

Your diet 

Food is meant to nourish you and help you perform at your best. But when you’re always eating junk food and not drinking enough water, you’re actually causing harm to your mental health.

Consider changing your diet and try to eat enough fresh fruit and vegetables. Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids can help to improve concentration. 

Your physical health 

Have you noticed that when you’re down with the flu, you’re not necessarily at your best as a person?  That’s because you can’t really separate your mental health from your physical health.

This is why you need to take care of your physical well-being because an illness, discomfort, and pain can either make you irritable, angry or really down.

Your social life 

The company you keep can have a big influence on the things you choose to focus on and think about. So, make sure that you surround yourself with positive thinkers, problem-solvers, and people who are supportive.

It’s important that you take care of your overall well-being. Your body and mental state have a way of letting you know how you’re doing, so listen to it!

If you’re concerned about your mental health state and notice that you’re not coping with your daily tasks like school activities, chores, and social relationships – you can reach out to organisations with community support services like SADAG and SA federation for mental health. Alternatively, you can contact LifeLine on 0861 322 322 / 011 728 1347 to get free help.

Remember, if you or a friend need help and advice, contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Messagea Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).