What are severe and persistent mental illnesses?
We have discussed some common mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression, and substance abuse elsewhere on this website. All of these can be serious and fatal. However, many clients have another disorder or mental illness that also interfere with daily life and threaten their health and wellbeing.
The most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which catalogs mental illnesses, is nearly 1,000 pages long. This shows that many people may suffer from less-well-known diseases.
Severe and persistent mental illnesses are those which are chronic and prevent people from living normally without intervention. They may worsen with time if left untreated. Examples include schizoaffective disorder, borderline personality disorder, or serious cases of obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Clients with these types of conditions often benefit from taking psychiatric drugs. However, psychotherapy can work hand-in-hand with medication to help manage symptoms and provide strategies for dealing with crises.
People considering therapy should also remember that they do not need a diagnosed mental disorder to enter counseling. Everyone feels angry, stressed, or despondent at times. Talking to a counselor can help people process their emotions and learn skills to cope with life’s frustrations.
Therapy for severe and persistent mental illness
Severe mental illnesses may hinder a person’s ability to perceive themselves or the world around them accurately. People may struggle with memory loss, catatonia, or urges to behave recklessly.
Psychotherapy treatment must be tailored to the client’s needs. It will usually involve talking about what to do in a crisis. Counseling can also help uncover some of the issues that may have helped cause the disorder, exacerbated symptoms, or related to serious episodes.
A counselor might work with clients’ loved ones or their psychiatrists to coordinate care and provide holistic support.
Counseling for severe and persistent mental illness can be complex and take time and effort to see results, but with perseverance, many clients are able to live with more happiness and independence.
Call the MindSol Wellness Center for mental health counseling in Sarasota, FL
If you or someone you care about is struggling with mental illness, call the MindSol Wellness Center of Sarasota, FL at (941) 256-3725.