Mental illness includes anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, bipolar affective disorder and personality disorders.
Mental illness can have an impact on a person’s cognitive, behavioural and social functioning, which can impact on a person's ability to undertake regular work, social and physical activities and can contribute to social isolation.
What steps can you take to improve your mental health?
Research reports a number of different aspects that we can work on to improve our mental health, these being:
How does exercise help?
When we exercise, we release approximately 40 different types of endorphins or hormones in our body that work on different parts of the brain, having many different effects.
These different endorphins have a role in waking up the brain. They assist to improve mood, feelings of wellness, motivation, jump-start our attention system and also help to improve how we perceive and regulate our emotions. We gain improvements in self-esteem from our hormones, and when exercising also feel a sense of accomplishment from completing the actual exercise.
In addition to this, if we are exercising in a group, we feel social connection and a sense of community as well.
Exercise also helps regulate the same neurotransmitters that antidepressants target.
Mindful exercise may also be helpful in allowing our bodies to regulate our stress hormones, such as cortisol, and reduce inflammation – which are predictors of depression and anxiety.
Read more about mental illness and exercise in our blog post here.
Mental Health Facts
✔ 1 in 5 Australians will experience a mental illness each year.
✔ Exercise also helps regulate the same neurotransmitters that antidepressants target.