6 Commonly Occurring Mental Illnesses in Women

womenhealthWomen’s Health Week 2020, is taking place this week of May. While mental illness affects millions all over the world, women are three times more likely to be diagnosed with mental illnessWhile the reason for this is still vastly unknown, some ideas include possible trauma or hardship related to gender discrimination. Some of the mental illness issues that women are experiencing regularly are listed below. 

  1. Depression – According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, depression is more prevalent in women than in men. Because of this, women are more likely to experience symptoms.  Although the severity of the symptoms greatly differ person to person, some symptoms include feelings of sadness, hopelessness, fatigue, and lack of motivation. Typically, a depressed woman will feel less interested in activities she once enjoyed. Depression can even lead to suicidal ideation or suicide attempts. If you suspect someone may have depression with thoughts of suicide, immediately call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline (1-800-273-8255) to speak with a counselor right away.  

  2. Anxiety Disorders – As mentioned above, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports higher rates of anxiety in women than in men. Symptoms often begin to appear after age 20 and before age 30. This is associated with the pressures of maintaining life as an adult, however why women are more likely to develop an anxiety disorder is widely unknown.  

  3. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) - PTSD occurs in people who have experienced trauma. While PTSD can happen to anyone, however women are typically diagnosed more often than men. There is much speculation over why this is, including ideas about gender inequality issues and the frequency of sexual abuse. Symptoms may include changes in mood, intrusive thoughts, inability to focus, hypervigilance, and avoidance.  

  4. Borderline Personality Disorder –  Women often experience the onset of borderline personality disorder in their 20s. This is thought to be because of changes in social relationships, both at work and in personal lives. Feelings of emptiness, changes in mood, engaging in risky or even dangerous behavior, and poor self-perception and self-image are what set apart borderline personality disorder 

  5. Anorexia – While this disorder can affect men as well, research shows that women make up 90% of anorexia cases. Poor body image has been associated with societal pressure on women to look thin combined with depression. Women with anorexia often feel they regain control of their lives by controlling their eating behaviors. Anorexia will eventually turn fatal due to under-eating unless proper treatment is sought as soon as possible. 

  6. Post-Partum Depression – While having a baby is often a joyous event, many mothers experience mental health complications after birth. Symptoms include feeling depressed, anxious, having trouble bonding with the baby, insomnia, appetite changes. Women who have a history of mental illness, including symptoms of depression and anxiety, are more likely to experience post-partum depression. Women who experience post-partum are also at a higher risk for developing major depression later in life. However, post-partum is very common, affecting 1 in 8 women during the first few months after childbirth. 

If you are a woman experiencing any of the above issues, neurofeedback may be the much-needed solution. Neurofeedback targets the specific parts of the brain that are having trouble functioning properly, which cause the unwanted symptoms. Specific protocol is created based on your individual brain map to help correct your brainwaves, so they are functioning at their highest ability. In addition to helping with mental illness, neurofeedback enhances executive functions which can lead to better performance in school and work. For more information, schedule a free consultation with Dr. Jolene Ross, the owner and director of Advanced Neurotherapy, to discuss your case and determine what the right treatment modality is right for you.  


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