This is a type of mental health
problem that can make a person
feel hyper one day and very down
the next. When they are hyper they
can seem very energetic, excited
and active, behaving and dressing
strangely. When they are down
they can seem very depressed.
Manic depression is an old fashioned
way of describing 'bipolar
When someone has a very big fear
of something that most people do
not find very scary at all. People can
have a phobia of anything from
spiders to stamps.
Sometimes when someone is ill they
might do something over and over
again; this is referred to as a
compulsion. It could be something
like washing your hands again and
again even if they are already clean.
The person usually thinks
something bad will happen if they
don't keep repeating the action.
They can often have obsessive
thoughts and compulsions at the
Depression is more than just feeling
sad; the person may also feel
hopeless or worthless. They may
have difficulty concentrating, have
little energy, difficulty sleeping and
a loss of appetite. These feelings
usually last for a long time.
This is another word for feeling fear,
or being scared or nervous. Some
people with mental illness can feel
like this even if it seems as though
there is nothing to be scared of.
This is the feeling someone has
when they suddenly feel very afraid
or nervous. Usually they feel scared
they cannot breathe properly, their
heart beats quickly and they start to
sweat. They also get a tingling in
their fingers, arms, toes and head.
They often feel something really
bad is about to happen or that they
are in real danger.
Usually, these are things the person
does not want to think about but
that they cannot get out of their
head. The person might think the
same thing over and over again. It
can be upsetting for them and often
happens at the same time as a
If someone has schizophrenia or is
'psychotic' they might have a lot of
confusing thoughts and feelings in
their head. Sometimes they find it
hard to tell what is real and what is
not real. People with this illness
sometimes smell, taste, hear or see
things that are not really there
(these are called hallucinations), but
the person believes they are real.
They can even feel confused about
people they know and love and, as a
result, they sometimes behave in
ways that seem strange to other
When someone has a lot of things they worry about all the time, they can feel 'stressed'. They worry so much that they find it hard to think about much else. Stress can stop people sleeping properly and they might eat too much, or too little. If a person feels stressed for a long time, it can stop them from enjoying life and being as happy as they used to be. It can also lead to other, more serious kinds of mental health problems.