People are Flocking to Mental Health Guides at an Alarming Rate

It is pretty commonly accepted that people will search physical health symptoms on websites like WebMD and others. Now people are doing the same with a variety of mental health guides (such as this one) that can help them learn about conditions, possible symptoms and even suggested treatments. The advantage to these guides is complex. They do not judge. They do not force you to do something you are not ready to do. They do not make you sit in a waiting room full of strangers who you fear might be judging you as well. They do not make you take time away from work, school, friends and family. Most of all, these guides are free. It doesn’t matter if you have insurance coverage or not. The guide is there any time of the day or night and you can carefully read every line at your pace. Even the best mental health professional limits you to 55 minutes and then you have to leave even if you have just reached a major breakthrough.

There are benefits to these guides but limitations as well. Even with those limits it is obvious that they are becoming a permanent part of the mental health landscape as more and more people turn to them to get the answers they are desperate to get. Whether you are looking for a diagnosis for yourself or a family member, mental health guides are quickly becoming the go to resource.

One of the reasons that these types of guides are gaining in popularity is the continued stigma surrounding mental health issues in general. Men are among the demographic that is the least likely to seek mental health counseling of any kind even when urged to do so by friends and family but could benefit greatly from reading through symptoms and treatment options in a comprehensive guide. They are a good resource for parents who are concerned about the behavior of their children as these guides can help pick up on even the subtler signs that could indicate things like autism and more.

Because so many people are using mental health guides now, there are many to choose from. The key warning would be to use guides that are endorsed, written by or published by trusted names in the mental health field. Obviously, it is more beneficial to people without a background in psychology or psychiatry to have guides that are written with plain, non-medical language without confusing jargon or abbreviations that must be looked up. A good guide explains everything and includes information about potential treatments and when something is a red flag or should be treated as more emergent than others.

These guides are also perfect for people who are waiting for appointments with counselors or doctors so that they can write out any questions they have. They may read through a list of symptoms and keep those with them to show the doctor so it can be discussed. Those symptoms may help get the discussion started and will provide a road map to your overall care.

Finally, these guides may take a lot of the fear out of the unknown by letting people explore symptoms and read through the care of each diagnosis on their own terms and in their own time. Once they have read the symptoms and discovered that maybe it isn’t as bad as they thought, that person might be ready to see a doctor for further treatment.

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