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Mental Health Concerns Rarely "Pop Out Of The Blue": A Whole Person Approach For Optimal Health

The issue of mental health has been a topic of conversation for many years. Mental health is often discussed in terms of diagnosis and treatment, but this approach is flawed. Mental health concerns rarely "pop out of the blue." The diagnosis is often the tip of the iceberg, as other factors are involved for optimal health. When looking at long-lasting results, it's imperative that a whole-person approach needs to be used. A holistic approach to wellness must be considered when diagnosing and treating mental illness.

A patient is a person with an illness, and the treatment should reflect this. Mental health practitioners must know how to tailor their approach to each individual's needs. The diagnostic process cannot be one-size-fits-all.

To move from diagnosis of mental health concerns toward optimal wellness for patients, we must get back to basics. The basics include healthy lifestyles with exercise, managing stress, avoiding alcohol, not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and having a growth mindset.

The medical management of mental health focuses on the illness and the symptoms of the illness. I challenge everyone to see mental health as a symptom of other life challenges. The way the patient would view mental health is being filtered through their coping mechanisms, past life experiences, and their beliefs and identity, to name a few. Rarely do mental health concerns "pop out of the blue"; a series of life events can trigger them.

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