Mental health is defined as state of mind which enables a person to remain calm and under control of will in times of panic, able to do judgments, make decisions; ability to think and perceive external stimuli is also included in mental health. Mental health is badly affected by chronic stress, depression, and anxiety, according to modern researches both physical and emotional stress is deadly killer of brain functions; long term stress leads to release of neurotransmitters which alter brain’s physiology and function. Stress, anxiety and depression are psychological factors which also interrupt the blood supply to vital centers of brain including respiratory centers and areas responsible for speech and hearing, vision, balance and intellectual functions.
History has many examples where people living in police custody, jails, torture cells, those confined to closed places due to some reasons, had severe brain injury and mental impairment due to mental stress and some of them became permanently handicapped. Not only psychological factors but also physical agents can impair mental functions and abilities. Physical factors which can affect mental health are noisy environment, sharp lights, intake of drugs, smoking, alcohol, environmental pollution including poisonous gases, smoke, diesel and petrol fumes, electromagnetic radiation like TV, computer, mobile phones, x rays and ultrasound rays; all these agents can cause brain damage if a person constantly gets exposed to them. Some professionals like factory workers, drivers, labors, miners are also at risk of bad mental health due to exposure of chemicals like mercury, arsenic; lead etc. all these chemicals severely damage brain cells if constant exposure is there.
People living in congested urban areas like big cities are more vulnerable to brain diseases and mental disorders as compared to people living in rural areas. Brain cells require continues supply of oxygen and brain can be permanently damaged within seconds of oxygen lack. Polluted areas of cities are devoid of oxygen and concentration of harmful gases is more, on the other hand; lack of plants and green fields alter balance of the echo system, result is altered environment with high concentrations of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and other poisonous gases which are killers of brain cells. Noise pollution is one of the commonest causes of metal imbalance according to researchers conducted in institutes of brain sciences. Continuous sharp loud noises are high frequency waves which damage brain cells and their functions.
Mental health could be maintained by some efforts, remain close to nature as far as possible, here are some tips for good mental health:
- Avoid stress; indulge yourself in healthy activities like reading, gardening, playing games, watching TV and listening to music for limited time, sports, and exercises. Have positive attitude, never think negatively, be prepared for difficult situations rather to fear about them or avoid them, be close to your family members, friends, neighbors, share your emotions, happiness, sadness, successes with them, never feel lonely, do well to people and help them and never expect in return, all these measures can have magical effects in relieving anxiety and depression.
- Avoid smoking, alcohol and drugs, especially anti-depressants and sleeping pills are very dangerous for brain and can only be taken on doctor’s prescription and in inevitable situations.
- Avoid noisy and polluted environment, if your profession is risky for your mental health, try to change it or have safety measures during working hours, spend your holidays or weekly vacations in some village or country side, river bank, or sea side if your pocket allows, and make picnic plans with your relative’s sand friends.
- In case of severe emotional attack or physical stress, consult doctor for some safe low power sleeping agents.
- Have sound sleep, take a warm bath before going to bed, have body massage or hair oiling for calm sleep.
- do yoga, yoga has magical effects on mental health.