Mental health and mental hygiene are closely related. “There is no strong mental health without hygiene.” Just to say that good mental health involves good mental hygiene. Yes, as much as the body needs hygiene to be healthy, the brain needs it too. In this case, it is about mental hygiene.
We are all aware of the chance to have good physical health. But, we often forget a very important part: the mind. As many people know, our mental health also affects our physical well-being. On several occasions, we have shown how concerns or anxiety, for example, lead us to somatization. Is it not essential, therefore, to start paying attention to our mental hygiene?
The term mental hygiene was first used in 1853 by the American William Sweetser (1797-1875), a professor of medicine at the University of Vermont, USA. Mental Hygiene (or cerebral hygiene) is a term created in the nineteenth century to designate all the precautions and measures for a psychic balance. It helps prevent mental illnesses and helps the person feel good in society.
Mental Health and Mental Hygiene
Mental Hygiene Means:
– in the medical field, all the preventive measures, and practices make it possible to protect a community against mental illnesses, ensure their detection and treatment, and facilitate people’s adaptation to their social environment.
– all the activities and means are implemented to maintain in harmony the psychic, emotional and cognitive well-being of the individual. Mental hygiene seeks to prevent inappropriate behavior in social life and ensure the psychological balance of the individual to preserve his mental health. The latter is related to the ability to handle fears, anxieties, and anxieties in everyday life.
I – What Is Mental Hygiene?
Mental hygiene can concern the community, that is to say, the means implemented by society to maintain the psychological well-being of each. It prevents the appearance of mental illness among the largest number of members of this population and inappropriate behavioral disorders to avoid disturbances to public order for example.
Everyone can also apply self-care principles to maintain or improve their physical and psychological well-being. It helps to maintain a good “lifestyle”, to feel fit, motivated, happy, and fulfilled, and guarantees the necessary psychological balance for good mental health.
Mental hygiene encourages the idea of “a healthy mind in a healthy body”. Nutritional and metabolic disorders caused by poor diet, sedentary lifestyle, alcohol or tobacco use, poor sleep, or worries affect health and can lead to mental illness.
II – Mental Hygiene and Good Habits
Healthy habits are as important to the body as they are to the mind. Mental hygiene offers several recommendations:
– To have confidence in oneself: to practice activities valuing one’s aptitudes and capacities make it possible to evolve one’s confidence. It can be sports activities, but also self-help techniques. Opening oneself to compliments and becoming one’s own best friend reduces negative self-criticism.
– To practice a regular physical activity: not only it has a euphoric effect from 30 minutes, but also a long-term relaxing effect when it is practiced regularly. It also improves sleep and prevents depression. It is recommended to do 30 minutes of walking a day and 3 times 30 minutes of moderate to intense activity per week.
– To relax: to arrange breaks during the day, learn how to breathe calmly and with confidence, stretch and listen to oneself, improve mental well-being, and prevent the appearance of anxiety in the long term.
– To meditate: meditation allows to replace parasitic thoughts with positive thoughts, turned towards the present. It favors the contemplation of the present moment and reduces the ruminations.
– Sleep well: sleep is one of the pillars of good mental health. Having good sleep hygiene is essential. Go to bed at regular times, disconnect from the screens at least an hour before bed, practice relaxing activities, read and avoid hearty meals, and excitement at night participate in restful sleep.
– Avoid intoxication: some habits can promote well-being and mental health, but others can have a deleterious effect and lead to depression, isolation, or anxiety: boredom, isolation, avoidance of important tasks, the consumption of tobacco, alcohol, coffee, or drugs.
– Fight against stress: chronic stress and poorly managed increases the risk of depression, anxiety disorders, and addictions. Mental hygiene recommends activities that promote relaxation: deep breathing, physical activity, sharing activities with others, massage, and activities that bring experience.
– Practicing the media diet: disconnecting from social networks, e-mails, television, radio, or newspapers for a few hours or a few days allows you to refocus on yourself and limit the external anxieties often anxiety.
– Do personal work on trauma: Psychotherapy with a psychologist helps to overcome the negative emotions associated with psychological and emotional shock.
It is not always easy to apply all of these recommendations. In some cases, the break is in the organization of everyday life. It is therefore important to reflect on your priorities and apply these principles gradually, at your own pace.
In other cases, the lock may be deeper, and help from a psychologist may be needed. Tools of help and motivation to change behaviors can gradually change lifestyle habits satisfactorily and according to the objectives of each.
III – Arrangements for Good Mental Hygiene
To be able to enjoy a healthy brain, you need to pay attention to some things that we often neglect. We are able to identify some of them easily, but for one reason or another, we continue to ignore them. Sooner or later, this complicit ignorance will make us pay the price. So it’s time to start building on good mental hygiene, by putting into practice some of the tips we will now give you in detail.
Banking on good mental hygiene will help you prevent diseases and disorders such as those related to anxiety.
*** Good mental hygiene translates into well-being
How long do past or future concerns occupy your mind? The present hardly appears. Suddenly, you find yourself on autopilot. Days without meaning that follow one another in the same way and in which you have stopped savoring little things for a long time.
It is important that you learn to practice mindfulness, focus on the here and now, and escape all thoughts that may become obsessive or ruminant. If you are stressed, you know what we want to talk about. Yesterday does not matter, tomorrow either. Open your eyes today and enjoy.
Despite this, know that there is another aspect to consider in your life. Do you have relationships with people who bring you things or who take things away from you? Why are you giving so much to people who do not fit you? Trying to be a good person and thanking everyone can be rewarded with pain and manipulation.
“I will not allow anyone to walk in my mind with dirty feet. –Mahatma Gandhi
Here is an idea: if you give everything to people who bring you nothing, maybe you will not have time to give to those who deserve it. Meditate on the relationships you have. Sometimes we are afraid to make the decision “Our relationship of friendship or love ends here” for fear of losing what we wanted so much, but it was not worth it. But doing so will bring great relief and promote your mental hygiene.
*** Stay away from the pessimistic view of reality
It is easy to opt for a pessimistic view of reality when things are not going well. This shows a low resilience and carries a big risk: your happiness and your mental hygiene are at stake. If you realize it, know that everything does not have the same reading according to the points of view. A goodbye or breakup can be considered a misfortune or an opportunity for growth. You choose the path you want to take.
And, do you give yourself what you need? Taking care of yourself, feeding yourself well, and watching over you are actions that you have probably already neglected. Maybe because you are addicted to others, have stopped thinking about yourself, or are leaving your happiness in the hands of others. This is a terrible mistake, which can lead you to a very negative view of life. You first and foremost! And it’s not selfishness. It means showing off and loving yourself, without waiting for others to do it for you.
You have probably already felt stuck in life because you could not reach a goal. But did you check if it was possible? Sometimes we set goals that we can not achieve. Free yourself from the impossible ones that only generate frustration, anxiety, and uselessness. This will be very positive for your mental hygiene.
“Wash your mind with love and honesty after every thought that undermines your tranquility. ” -Luis Espinoza-
Have you realized the importance of good mental hygiene? There are many habits that can make you feel good, such as eliminating expectations, stopping thoughts in your head with which you do not solve anything, forgetting to try to change people, or learning to manage your emotions.
We tend to complicate life or blame others for what happens to us when in reality the power to make it better and simpler is in our hands. It’s not as bad as it sounds, everything is not as bad as we think. Cleansing our minds of all that is in excess and preventing us from seeing clearly will allow us to plunge into true well-being.
We will never stop repeating: There is no strong mental health without hygiene. Just to say that good mental health involves good mental hygiene. Yes, we are all aware of the impact of mental hygiene on mental health, but what do we mean by the term “mental health”?
According to Wikipedia, mental health defines psychic, emotional, and cognitive well-being or an absence of a mental disorder. The term is relatively recent and polysemic. According to J. Sutter, mental health is perceived as “[the] ability of the psyche to function harmoniously, pleasantly, effectively and flexible to cope with difficult situations by being able to regain its balance. ”
There is no clear definition of mental health, but for the World Health Organization (WHO) “we define mental health as a state of well-being that enables everyone to realize their potential, to cope with normal difficulties in life, to work successfully and productively and to be able to make a contribution to the community. ”
Mental health can be affected by disorders, including depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia. A list of mental health disorders and their descriptions are given in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association and the WHO International Classification of Diseases.