The Benefits and Challenges of Behavioral Health Treatment

March 22nd, 2022 by admin Leave a reply »

The term Behavioral Health was coined almost 40 years ago. However, over time, the meaning of this word has evolved. Most people use behavioral health as a synonym for mental health, whereas there is a difference between the two.

Mental health deals with a person’s mental state or psychology but behavioral health deals with the habits a person possesses, such as eating patterns, sleeping patterns, the lifestyle choices they make. etc. If a person struggles with a mental health issue, it can be comorbid with behavioral health problems and physical health issues. According to estimates, 70 percent mental health issues exist in correlation with behavioral health issues. Therefore behavioral health treatment centers or services have become essential to combat the disease.

According to a study, around 44 million people struggle from mental health-related problems every year but only 40 percent of these are able to receive treatment. There are several reasons that contribute to people not seeking help for mental disorders. While 60 percent of the people do not seek treatment because of the associated social stigma, others do not seek treatment as they remain undiagnosed, do not have the money, lack the access to a reliable mental health facility, or do not have credible behavioral health centers near them.

Behavioral Health Services

Behavioral health services are not limited to mental health treatment programs. With its evolving scope, the range of services offered has only increased. Some of these services include:

Psychiatric
Psychology
Mental health counseling
Family and marriage counseling
Substance abuse treatment including prevention, recovery and intervention
Chronic disease management

Understanding Behavioral Health

Behavioral health refers to the relationship between daily habits (good and bad) and how they affect physical and mental health. Ideally, good habits (healthy eating, exercise, and sleep patterns) lead to a balance between good physical and mental health. On the contrary, bad habits often lead to poor physical and mental health.

Based on lifestyle choices made, behavioral disorders might include:

Living in unhygienic conditions
Eating disorder
Social isolation
Sleep disorder (sleeping too less or too much)
Substance abuse including drug, alcohol or chemical dependency
Addictive behavior such as gambling, sex, compulsive shopping, etc.

Why It Is So Difficult To Seek Treatment?

Most people do not seek help for behavioral disorders because they remain in denial. It is difficult for them to accept that they have a problem. Some people believe that it is a choice that they have made and therefore it cannot be called a problem. The reasons for not seeking treatment can be myriad and varied. Some of the other reasons may include:

Social Stigma and embarrassment
Fear of getting judged by society
Not being able to recognize symptoms effectively
Lack of trust and support
Feelings of loneliness and hopelessness

What Are The Benefits Of Seeking Treatment?

Behavioral health disorders are complex and require customized treatment, but it is difficult to convince patients to seek treatment. However, knowing about the benefits of treatment can provide the needed nudge to seek treatment. The advantages of seeking treatment are as follows:

Improves quality of life
Combats mental illness from its root
Improves personal and professional relationships
Reduces chances of complications especially for addiction-related problems
Improves productivity
Mitigates risk of medical issues

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