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PHE 4095 Assignment Mental Illness and Public Health

PHE 4095 Assignment Mental Illness and Public Health


Poor mental health not only affects a person’s ability to live a fulfilling life and carry on with their school, work, or familial responsibilities; it also can lead to physical and social problems with serious impacts. By advocating for prevention and developing effective interventions, public health professionals help individuals and communities combat mental health issues.

Mental Health as a Public Health Issue

Public health aims to promote healthy lifestyles, as well as to detect, prevent, and respond to diseases. The prevalence of mental health issues that affect individuals’ physical and social well-being makes dealing with mental health integral to achieving public health goals.

To begin with, mental health has a huge impact on how people relate to others, make decisions, and handle stress. People’s ability to live fulfilling lives often depends on their mental health. This makes protecting and restoring mental health of immediate concern to public health professionals.

PHE 4095 Assignment Mental Illness and Public Health


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Mental Health and Social Relationships

Poor mental health influences people’s relationships with their children, spouses, relatives, friends, and co-workers. Often, poor mental health leads to problems such as social isolation, which disrupts a person’s communication and interactions with others. This can have particularly harmful effects on children and adolescents whose development depends on forming bonds with their family members and peers. In adulthood, this social isolation can lead to family breakdown, divorce, or even childhood neglect.

Mental health problems frequently put financial and emotional strain on families. For example, a family trying to address a child’s mental illness may exhaust untold funds in search of treatment. Individual family members may also struggle to cope with their own symptoms that require support, such as depression or sleeping problems.

Children who have family members experiencing mental health problems may blame themselves. This can result in loneliness and feelings of being different. It may also lead to future behavioral or social problems. Additionally, as families address their loved ones’ mental health problems, they may socially isolate out of fear of judgment from others, further disrupting their emotional well-being.

Mental Health and Substance Misuse

A clear relationship exists between mental health issues and substance misuse. Each can lead to the other. In fact, one in four people with a serious mental illness also has a substance use disorder, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) shows that people with mental health issues are also at greater risk of using nonprescription opioids.

People with mental illness consume substances that harm their health at higher rates than people without mental health issues, according to the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Consider the following statistics: 37 percent of individuals with severe mental health issues smoke cigarettes, while only 16 percent of people without mental health issues smoke; nearly a third of adults with severe mental health issues are binge drinkers, compared to a quarter of people without mental health issues who report binge drinking.

Additionally, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports an increased risk for the development of substance use disorders among children and adolescents with mental disorders. The research shows that children develop mental health issues such as depression and anxiety before they develop substance use disorders, suggesting mental health issues lead to problems with alcohol and drugs.

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