What Is Self-Medication And Why Do People Self-Medicate?

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The 2017 Health Conference primarily focused on outbreaks of diseases. There was a discussion on the typhoid fever situation among students in an Indonesian school. The causes, symptoms, and the size of the outbreak was also talked about by researchers, clinicians, and health professionals. The tuberculosis outbreak in the Western parts of Indonesia was also one of the essential topics of the conference, as Indonesia is on the top ten list of the most incidences of TB worldwide. Lastly, the topic of self-medication practices among students, teens, and adults alike.

What is self-medication and why do people self-medicate?

The conventional meaning of self-medication is “the consumption of drugs and other home remedies on one’s own will or from another individual’s suggestion without seeking help from a qualified physician.” Self-medication is a typical practice as it is a kind of self-care for our mental and physical health. Self-medicating for small injuries like wounds, minor headaches, and mild types of pain may help alleviate the burden of our healthcare system. Thus, it is a usual practice in most states of America.

However, the risk with self-medication arises when people medicate themselves even when their conditions are more serious, specifically mental health conditions, which demand proper treatment from a medical professional. Instead of going to a psychiatrist or therapist for that, most people use over-the-counter medications and supplements, sometimes with other substances like drugs or alcohol. These will most likely lead to the development of new conditions.

Reasons For Self-Medication

There is minimal positive outcome with self-medicating for mental health conditions, and what’s worse is that it may even potentially increase the likelihood of worsening the symptoms. But for these people who self-medicate, that rationale may be pushed aside. And if you come to think of it, most of the reasons are understandable. These are:

  • They are afraid to get treatment because of the negative stigma.
  • Consulting a doctor and getting treatment for a mental health condition is expensive.
  • Some people are scared to accept their condition.
  • They are afraid of the ill side effects of the targeted medications.

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All these may not make sense to other people, but it is vital to try somehow to understand and consider these people’s reasons. If you are trying to help someone who is practicing self-medication to cope with his mental health disease, be empathic and compassionate. This way, it will be easier to guide them into getting the proper treatment.

 

 

Career Counseling Advice: Managing Burnout without Leaving Your Current Job

 

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As a novice in your preferred industry or field, you couldn’t wait to get your life started, expecting great things and achievements. You are yearning to utilize your skills and talents and impress superiors and colleagues with your drive and dedication.

 

But somehow, on the way to your dreams and aspirations, your passion and momentum slowly start to fade, and instead of doing well and nailing all projects, you have found yourself going through an endless cycle, uninspired and uninterested. It could be – “When you don’t feel like going to work, or you are emotionally drained at the end of the day, you are probably experiencing early to late-stage burnout. If the feelings have overcome your life, you might be suffering from depression. I recommend you see a therapist to rule out depression, but burnout can be just as devastating,” says Marcia Reynolds Psy.D.

 

What The Survey Says

 

If you’re feeling this way right now, you’re not alone. A survey made by Gallup reported that about 51% of workers were not wholly engaged in their work; meaning that these employees cannot find the essence of their jobs and do not feel adequately invested in what they’re doing.

 

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Sometimes, it is natural to feel unattached from work, especially when one cannot seem to find enjoyment anymore.

However, if your job means a lot to you, there are ways you can do to rekindle that passion and spark that you once had when you were starting.

 

Career Counseling Advice

 

Before you even consider on jumping ships, stop for a moment and give yourself time to reconsider. Here’s what career counselors have to say:

 

  1. Declutter

 

Seeing less mess on your desk will put your mind at ease. Decluttering has a way of psychologically clearing your mind from unnecessary things. Visible clutter on your office desk will only distract you from your task and not help your brain focus on what should be accomplished.

 

According to a study conducted by Princeton University, excessive clutter tends to wrestle for your attention, making you less productive and more disturbed. The more discernable stuff that your brain consciously notices, the more you become fatigued and overwhelmed. Susan Krauss Whitbourne, PhD concluded that, “Clutter is often an insidious and seemingly harmless outgrowth of people’s natural desire to appropriate their personal spaces with possessions… when clutter becomes excessive, it can threaten to physically and psychologically entrap a person in dysfunctional home environments which contribute to personal distress and feelings of displacement and alienation.”

 

Therefore, the best way to deal with the mess is to declutter by reducing unnecessary items on top of your desk and at the same time sorting your documents and folders by importance for efficient organization.

 

  1. Find Meaning In Everything You Do

 

Without meaning, you will find yourself unmotivated. “Creating meaning in your life comes from throwing yourself whole-heartedly into your choices, doing the footwork,” said Rachel Fintzy Woods, MA, LMFT, “And accepting that the results are not always in your control.” Always think of the reasons why you are doing what you do in the first place. Whatever reason you have – perhaps for your future dreams or for the money that allows you and your family to be well-sustained, or the trip abroad you’ve been saving up for- make sure that you regularly remind yourself of your motivations.

 

Whether it’s for skills expertise or personal and financial development, you always need to give yourself a reason to keep moving forward. If you remind yourself of the reason for staying, it’ll uplift your enthusiasm that will make you further invested.

 

  1. Take Full Advantage Of Benefits

 

Company benefits are essential pieces that are included in your compensation. By maxing out on these benefits, your negative outlook about your job will change into a positive one. It’s a huge mistake to not take full advantage of vacation days and health coverage. Other company perks you can avail of are gym subsidies, profit sharing, insurance, and discounts on travel and entertainment. Orient yourself on the different benefits that your company offers and get the most out of it.

 

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In this highly competitive economy, it’s hard to find work, let alone land a job that you find interesting and suitable for your skills and work experience. There are far less drastic methods than quitting which can reignite the fire within you and convince you to stay with your current job.

Therapist Views On How People’s Work-Life Balance Is Being Disrupted

 

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Who wouldn’t love to have a successful work-life balance? Here’s the thing: there are routines that you do which sabotage your yearning for equilibrium.

 

Therapists conclude that people would’ve had a better chance with work-life balance if they only knew what they’re doing wrong and are aware of the reasons why they keep crashing and burning. What exactly are these things that prevent a person from achieving work-life balance?

 

Ambiguous Understanding Of What Work-Life Balance Means

To you, what does work-life balance mean? Often, you would get answers such as unplugging, doing hobbies, or indulging in things or activities that are relaxing after a grueling workweek. Though this idea is correct, it’s merely a little part of the broad, inclusive definition of work-life balance. Come to think about it. If the majority of those who work consider work-life-balance as hobby-spending ideation, then they can easily set aside an hour or two to fulfill this yearning.

 

A weekend getaway can be associated with unplugging; although, with the presence of technology in everything a person does, it’s entirely unrealistic to expect that work-life balance can be attained by merely disconnecting. As Gary Gilles, LCPC said that, “Most people spend enormous amounts of time on trivialities that are unnecessary at the moment.” As for those who have discovered how to merge these two, they are more inclined to have increased recovery when their professional and personal lives collide.

 

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Improper Management Of Time

When it comes to spending one’s time, people always have a choice. One of the primary reasons why people become more neglectful of relationships or are continually running in late is because time management is not appropriately executed. With that, you must re-evaluate your priorities, learning to say “no” when needed, and delegating every nonessential that does not conform to your work-life balance definition.

For example, “If you look at your home life and map out all the successes that do not necessarily involve work, it can enable growth in appreciation for life outside of work.” said Jaime L. Kurtz, PhD, “This could possibly lead for a desire to strive for a better work-life balance.”

 

Passing Up On Vacation Leaves

Due to the workaholic nature of the majority, especially the millennials, being chained to their environment and forfeiting days of vacation because of the guilt of utilizing them happens quite often. As Melody Wilding, LMSW stated that, “An all-encompassing career is difficult to balance alongside caregiving duties, which makes things difficult for many women, people of color, and baby boomers. By fostering workaholism, companies miss out on an opportunity to strengthen their teams (and profits) with diverse leadership.” Think of it this way – you have vacation days because your work wants you to have them and use them to be rejuvenated so as not to get burnt out and become inefficient or afflicted.

 

Disregarding Symptoms

A dull headache or poor quality of sleep can be as it is, but there are times that symptoms you feel are part of a more extensive health problem. Chronic head, neck, and shoulder pain or constant sleep disruptions are early warning signs that your body is experiencing a malady. If these symptoms keep persisting and are worsening, the most appropriate thing to do is to seek the advice of medical experts.

 

Feeble Communication

When you have a personalized and transparent identification of work-life balance, it’s appropriate to share with other people what your goals are. Frank discussions of objectives for the following weeks or years are vital. Feeble, inadequate communication of intentions or goals with other people, like family or friends, will only result ina shaky follow through. It is advisable not to keep these thoughts to yourself and be diligent in sharing your specific needs with other people to avoid regression while ultimately cultivating and practicing work-life balance.

 

Neglecting Psychological Issues

According to a report, there are about one in five adults who struggle with mental illness in the United States alone. The moment people neglect their psychological health, relationships will suffer, as well as overall work performance. There are a lot of indications that signal disregard for mental health and one of them is irritability coupled with exhaustion, lack of motivation, and weak relationships. For those who are experiencing psychological symptoms, they have to convey concerns with people they trust and must set aside precious time for counseling and daily self-care.

 

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Conclusively, you alone have the power to attain work-life balance. Persisting on having a keen and precise perception regarding the lifestyle that you are creating is essential. And remember, having a work-life balance is a choice that is entirely dependent on you.

 

Psychiatrist Warns Destructive Effects Of Stress On The Brain

 

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While others are considering stress as part of daily living and is something that should just be powered through, psychiatrists say otherwise. There are a couple of things that occur when your brain experiences stress and they are alarmingly scary.

 

When anxiety and stress get out of hand, your brain takes a lot of beating. How bad does it take?

 

Stress Increases Your Risk For Depression

Constructing on previous research that realizes habitual stress prevents the creation of neurons inside the brain’s hippocampus, scientists at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) have conducted studies on mice.These scientists have found out that if put under increasing and endless amounts of stress, brain neurons weren’t formed and the brain was unable to regenerate. More importantly, the brain exhibited symptoms leaning towards depression.

 

The scientists concluded that the findings are congruent with the thought that depression is brought about by stress, and exposure to stressful occurrences can precipitate the condition. Ben Martin, Psy.D. stated that, “Such stressful events may include a serious loss, a difficult relationship, trauma, or financial problems.”

 

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Stress Disables Proper Learning Function

Inside the hippocampus, there lie the neural stem cells. Neural stem cells are structures that become neurons and are responsible for memory and learning. However, when chronic stress is experienced, neural stem cells are instead transformed into oligodendrocytes that cover myelin. Myelin is an insulator that, when in excess, perturbs the harmony of timing and communication along the circuitry of the brain, altering connection of neurons with one another. This finding is based on the study conducted by Berkeley’s University of California.

 

Conclusively, these abnormal changes upset cognitive function, which includes emotional and mental well-being and acquisition of information. Consequential alterations happening during myelination have caused neurological problems that potentially contribute to mental illnesses such as depression, PTSD, and anxiety.

 

Stress Is A Catalyst For Stroke

Increased stress levels increase a person’s risk to develop stroke. In a survey provided to a number of different adults, which involved questions about mental factors like depression and stress, it was found that people who were chronically stressed have undergone a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or what is also known as stroke. Some of the reasons for chronic stress would be money, relationships, vices, eating habits, and unhealthy lifestyle. Psychological attributes are equitably essential as much as conventional risk factors like cholesterol, blood pressure, and so on.

 

Stress Shrinks The Brain

Life events that induce anxiety including family problems, death, divorce, or financial instability can significantly affect the grey matter located at the medial prefrontal layer of the brain that is responsible for handling emotions and self-control, researchers at Yale University stated in 2012. The aggregation of life’s stressors creates a more challenging scenario for individuals to deal with impending situations that create stress.

 

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Calming The Stress Down A Notch

While stress is unavoidable, it can be dealt with effectively. How can you calm the storm within that does much damage to the brain?

 

  1. Exercise

Many great things have been said regarding exercise. If you’re not a fan of doing rigorous activities for the sake of healthier brain function, you can opt for simple solutions like walking for 30 minutes or so, daily. Experts consider exercise as an effective stress-buster that can offset destructive brain responses and lessen neural impairment. According to Sarah Gingell Ph.D.  “The idea that physical exercise might do something really fundamental for mental health is less immediately obvious—especially given the Western distinction between “mind” and “body” that implies mental and physical health can be separated.”

 

  1. Sleep

This cannot be emphasized enough but sleeping at least six hours a day is really helpful for warding off stress and promoting proper brain activity. Sleep is essential in controlling stress hormones so stick to your sleep plan and make your room more conducive. According to Jann Gumbiner Ph.D.  “ Sleep has restorative power and evidence shows that sleep enhances memory and improves attention. Sleep is not an option. It is essential.”

 

  1. Know That Stress Is Reversible

You can shoo away stress from your life; this is a fact that you have to remember. All you need to do is identify what stresses you out and do something about it for your brain to generate new neurons normally.

 

By realizing that stress is reversible and that the brain can naturally recover from painful experiences, it now depends on you to make positive changes in your life to beat impending consequences caused by stress.

 

 

8 Wellness Activities To Do With Your Partner Today 

Overall wellness is a life-long journey that requires consistency, commitment, and determination. Wellness is a process; it is not something that is achieved overnight. Traditionally, wellness has focused on just physical and mental health. Now, we have the eight dimensions of wellness that encompass our lives. These eight dimensions are a staple part of our lives, and we must understand that each one can impact the overall quality of life. 

 

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  Continue reading 8 Wellness Activities To Do With Your Partner Today 

Reasons Why Wellness Leads To Stronger Relationships 

As stated by the World Health Organization, wellness is not just the absence of diseases or illnesses. Wellness is an active process. When you decide to take your journey to wellness, you actively seek awareness and make decisions that will lead to a healthy and fulfilling life. It is more than just a healthy body. It is a healthy mind, body, and soul.  

 

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  Continue reading Reasons Why Wellness Leads To Stronger Relationships 

Couple Goals: Fulfilling The 8 Dimensions Of Wellness Together 

Being in a relationship is not all about the first dates, flowers, chocolates, and all the romantic hullabaloo. You will realize soon that being in a relationship entails much more aspects of your personality than just your heart’s desire.  

  

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  Continue reading Couple Goals: Fulfilling The 8 Dimensions Of Wellness Together 

Can Resiliency To Stress Lengthen Your Life Expectancy?

On a scale of one to ten, ten being the highest, where do you think you stand with handling daily stressors? Are you the easy-going, flexible type or the weep-until-I-sleep type?

 

Resilience, to people, is many different things; but in most cases, resilience is the capacity of an individual to power through situations brought about by conflicts or discord either at home, work, or within the community.

 

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Continue reading Can Resiliency To Stress Lengthen Your Life Expectancy?

Treating Anxiety And Phobias Using Alternative Methods

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Let’s talk about anxiety and phobia. Every person experiences anxiety and being afraid in their lifetime. Only dead people are not capable of doing so. Kidding aside, one needs to identify when these feelings are healthy and adaptive, or it is already becoming a nuisance to the everyday occurrence and later leads to psychological complications. More than ever, this article will also deal with some of the alternative treatments that can help anxiety and phobia

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