News

Premier Health brings you the latest information about our health system, member hospitals, health centers, and organizations. For more information, please refer to our media contacts and resources.

Good Mental Health is Key to Overall Wellness

Primary Care Physicians Urge Patients to Make Mental Health a Priority

DAYTON, Ohio (December 27, 2011) – When people think about their health, mental health often times isn’t part of the equation. As more studies reveal that people in the United States are affected by mental illness, Premier HealthNet is reminding patients that it’s imperative to work with their primary care physician to maintain good mental health.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that approximately 25 percent of adults in the U.S. have a mental illness and nearly 50 percent will develop at least one mental illness in their lifetime. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, more than 50 percent of individuals who sought treatment for a mental health issue did so through a primary care physician.

Common mental health issues include depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Mental health issues can be caused by a number of factors including genetically-inherited traits, traumatic life experiences and imbalances in brain chemistry. Symptoms of mental health issues vary but may include fatigue, body aches, difficulty concentrating or sleeping, changes in weight and mood swings.

“Everyone can feel stressed, anxious or sad, but it’s not necessarily always a disorder,” said Dr. Nafisa Islam of Brookville Family Care. “It’s more about the degree to which an individual experiences symptoms—that’s how we distinguish between normal emotions and mental illness.”

Although mental health issues are more frequently diagnosed today, they are very treatable. Medications including antidepressants, mood stabilizers, and low dose antipsychotics can be prescribed to treat a number of conditions. Therapy is another option individuals can participate in to help them cope with metal health issues. There are even things individuals can do that don’t require a prescription that have been proven to improve mental health, including a healthy diet, exercise and getting exposure to sunlight.

“Sometimes people feel they don’t have help or can’t seek treatment without mental health insurance coverage,” said Dr. Islam. “Like any physical disease or disorder, though, it’s important that mental health issues are diagnosed and treated, which can begin with a check-up with a primary care physician.”

Yearly visits to a primary care physician are crucial to the detection and management of mental health issues. Primary care physicians can help individuals identify warning signs and risk factors of mental health issues and recommend the appropriate treatment to help individuals cope with them.

Yearly visits to a primary care physician are crucial to the detection and management of mental health issues. Primary care physicians will work with their patients to identify warning signs and risk factors of mental health issues. In some cases, the best course of a patient's treatment is determined by a team.

Contact Us

Discover more about Premier Health and join us in building healthier communities in Southwest Ohio. Learn more about working at Premier Health, becoming a volunteer, and making a gift to support our mission.