Here's Your Sign to Get Help for Your Mental Health
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Health and Wellness

If You're Looking For A Sign To Get Help For Your Mental Health, This Is It

It's never too "soon" to seek help when it comes to your mental health--and it's also never too late.

If You're Looking For A Sign To Get Help For Your Mental Health, This Is It

About four months ago, I was waking up almost every morning with at least one or two of the following feelings in my chest: heart-pounding, cold-sweat anxiety, or absolute dread for the day ahead of me. I knew where this feeling was primarily stemming from. It was my recent "split," if you could call it that, from a guy I'd been unofficially "dating"--but the feelings themselves were nothing new. Neither was the way I felt in class, or while I was doing homework or studying. I was completely unengaged, zoned out, unmotivated, and exhausted, despite my best efforts to pay attention to my professors and get some decent sleep the night before.

And as much as I told myself that this was coming from my recent boy situation and simple stress from being a first-semester freshman, I knew that I couldn't deal with feeling this way anymore. I couldn't deny that, though these feelings and moods had different triggers every time, all varying in how badly they affected me, I'd been feeling this way since I was in eighth grade.

The kicker finally came when I got an email from my school over winter break, informing me of the one thing no freshman in college wants to hear: I was on academic probation. I finally realized that, yes, I did have to get my shit together and try quite a bit harder in school, but also that maybe there were some factors that weren't completely in my control.

It turned out I was right. A few weeks later, after getting referred by my doctor, I went in to get tested for ADHD; I identified with a lot of the symptoms and figured it was the main reason why I hadn't been able to concentrate on practically anything since before high school. I ended up coming out of my appointment with three diagnoses: anxiety, depression, and (mild) inattentive ADHD.

I thought that I would be devastated upon hearing my (multiple) mental health diagnoses, but I can honestly say that getting diagnosed was the first weight that was lifted off my shoulders. Finally getting an explanation for why I'd felt the way I had for so long, and getting the green light for treatment (including medication) was the biggest relief I'd ever felt.

Fast-forward to right now: I'm four weeks into my second semester, and five weeks on Lexapro, my prescribed anti-depressant/anti-anxiety medication. And I can honestly say that I'm so much happier than I was five weeks ago. The things that would have felt like the absolute end of the world to me last semester, last year, or even in any given year of high school, are just simple inconveniences or shitty things that I can brush off and get over. It's an amazing feeling, finally being able to put everything in perspective and identify what's a huge issue and what isn't. That's just my anxiety getting the best of me; or whether it's a bad life or just a bad day.

Mental health is a tricky subject, and it can be hard to work up the courage to ask for help. Trust me, though--it's definitely worth it. I've only been taking medication and going to counseling for five weeks, and I can honestly say that it's gotten me feeling much better than I have at any given point in the past five years. Everyone's life is different, but if you ask me if you have the option to seek help for your mental health, it's definitely worth any hassle you might have to deal with in order to do so.

So I'm hoping my story inspires whoever may stumble upon it to seek help. I promise you it will be worth it. If you think you're overreacting, if what you're feeling isn't that bad, or that other people have it "worse" than you, let me tell you this: Anything that you are feeling is valid. There are no minimum requirements for seeking help for mental health. Everyone deserves the chance to live life with a clear and healthy mind, and if you have even an ounce of doubt about if that's you, I highly encourage you to reach out to anyone you can for help. It's never too soon to seek help, and it's also never too late. Seeking help for my mental health was honestly the best decision I've ever made--my only regret is that I didn't do it sooner. So if you need a sign to talk to your parents, call your doctor, or even to look into some of your symptoms, this is it.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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