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Crohn's Disease Forum » Support Forum » Mental Health Support » Mental Illness versus Psyshical Illness


02-11-2014, 02:00 PM   #1
Guest323244
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Mental Illness versus Psyshical Illness

Many people say that mental illness is worse then physical illness. I have been diagnosed with several mental illnesses, and disagree. What do others think?

Last edited by Guest323244; 02-11-2014 at 03:24 PM.
02-11-2014, 03:14 PM   #2
Hope345
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I think they both bring about problems that only people going through them (and their family) will understand.

Since you have both and know that physical ailments bring about life changing issues, pain, emotional stress: which could also be diagnosed incorrectly as a mental illness, this is a perfect question for you to expand on.

I have talked to several people that are so emotionally drained from IBD, that they become suicidal, have lost all confidence in themselves and dont even want to leave their house.

The support of this site, our own personal beliefs, family, friends and what our inner strength bring us, is what allows each person to make it through the day.

As a parent of a 15 year old daughter who is exhausted, suffering, anemic, with no treatment honestly helping her, I can see the mental issues developing. None of them are her fault or yours, or anyone with such physical ailments.

My heart goes out to all of you. There are so many people suffering and trying their best to move forwards. You all deserve a medal!!!!!
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Continue to be hopeful
Daughter: age 21, undiagnosed: GI issues

Last edited by Hope345; 02-11-2014 at 08:37 PM.
02-11-2014, 08:20 PM   #3
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I think it depends on the particular illness, the severity, and the sufferer's life situation and coping abilities. I don't see any need to compare them, honestly. We're all unwell and we should all support each other rather than playing 'Who's Sicker.' I don't get why people love that game so much.

As Julie outlined, there's a lot of connections between the two, anyway. Individuals with physical illnesses are more likely than the general population to develop mental illnesses, primarily depression and anxiety. Often, they go hand in hand.

I had more thoughts on the subject but I lost them.
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02-12-2014, 03:09 AM   #4
Guest323244
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We're all unwell and we should all support each other rather than playing 'Who's Sicker.' I don't get why people love that game so much.
I hope you're not including me in that, as I made no mention of such.

I agree about the intensity of the illness being important, but my opinion is that a bad physical illness is usually harder to deal with than a bad mental illness.
02-12-2014, 11:22 AM   #5
Hope345
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No, she was not including you in that comment at all....
You have all of our support. I think this is an important subject to cover and so glad you brought it up.
There may already be a thread in regards to some of the best meds that many use to help them deal with the stress of IBD.
It is a serious subject but I know many try to help themselves with humor and the comfort of a pet.
My daughter just told me last night that animals are so comforting to her. She feels she can tell them everything. We are currently planning on getting her a kitten. She also watches lots of funny videos when she can....
thank you for talking about this subject, depression is something you all face (and family members too)...
02-12-2014, 01:38 PM   #6
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I hope you're not including me in that, as I made no mention of such.

I agree about the intensity of the illness being important, but my opinion is that a bad physical illness is usually harder to deal with than a bad mental illness.
No, I wasn't. I didn't see you as acting that way at all!
02-14-2014, 06:19 AM   #7
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It of course depends on the particular conditions in question and their severity, etc. But generalising, I think mental illness is worse. The stigma is unbelievably intense, and mental illness complicates all sorts of issues that many people like to take for granted - who we are, whether we have free will to control our thoughts and actions and emotions and memories, whether illness is our fault and whether it's our fault if we don't get better, or try to get better. The definition is so blurred - medicalisation can mean that what in other cultures might have been regarded as an aspect of personality is defined somewhere else as mental illness. (E.g. some time ago someone might have been regarded as a badly behaved child, but today might be regarded as having ADHD). Mental illness is so closely connected with immorality and I feel that makes it worse to suffer from than physical illness, as a rule.

Yet, when you are in a state of acute physical illness, that will completely dominate your existence to an extent that mental illness does not so often come close to doing: if you're in a coma, you're in a coma. Physical pain can be so bad that you can not think or do anything except wish the pain would stop. In moments like that, physical illness will overrule any mental suffering. But although physical illness has this ability to push mental suffering into the background, I don't think it is actually worse than mental suffering.
02-14-2014, 06:35 AM   #8
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I think it depends on the particular illness, the severity, and the sufferer's life situation and coping abilities. I don't see any need to compare them, honestly. We're all unwell and we should all support each other rather than playing 'Who's Sicker.' I don't get why people love that game so much.

As Julie outlined, there's a lot of connections between the two, anyway. Individuals with physical illnesses are more likely than the general population to develop mental illnesses, primarily depression and anxiety. Often, they go hand in hand.

I had more thoughts on the subject but I lost them.
I agree with you, except I think positives can come from drawing comparisons. It's a bad thing if it becomes a "game", but if it's discussed sensitively, it can be very worthwhile. Some illnesses are much worse than others. Drawing comparisons could, for example, allow someone to appreciate that their own illness isn't so bad when they compare it to someone else's. Drawing comparisons could enable someone to see that the things which are known to be helpful in one illness could also help with another illness. And it's necessary (perhaps a necessary evil, but still necessary) to compare illnesses for purposes such as allocating resources or determining whether someone should be entitled to disability benefits.

We're all unwell, but some of us are a lot sicker than others, and I think it's better to recognise that rather than ignore it. If one person's illness is relatively minor, they're going to need different support than a person whose illness has completely overtaken their life, and they need to recognise that their illness is worse in order to understand why they cannot live the same way as the person with only minor problems.
02-14-2014, 09:16 AM   #9
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I am thinking comparing mental illness and physical illness is like comparing apples to oranges. Though they can come together
It really depends on how serious the mental illness is and how serious the physical one is. Mental illness does come with lots of stigma though. My favorite joke to tell people is I am crazy and have the meds to prove it
Both can be invisible illnesses. Both can be bad. I wouldn't say one is worse than the other though
02-14-2014, 09:37 AM   #10
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It is a serious subject but I know many try to help themselves with humor and the comfort of a pet.
My daughter just told me last night that animals are so comforting to her. She feels she can tell them everything. We are currently planning on getting her a kitten. She also watches lots of funny videos when she can....
thank you for talking about this subject, depression is something you all face (and family members too)...

my dogs help me tremendously! They don't judge,they can tell when I'm not feeling well and comfort me.Walking around the yard with my dogs was the first outside thing I did after surgery.Honestly,I hope I don't bring them down to my level when I'm feeling low.I can't help but smile and feel happy when they get excited to go out or go for a ride.They help with my physical activity and my mental well being.

I tried to quote you Hope345 but I didn't quite do it correctly...
02-14-2014, 10:38 AM   #11
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If you like animals and can have a pet, I think it's wonderful to have one. I can complain to my dog and all she wants to do is lick me and make me feel better. And I take comfort in her weight and heat while laying on my lap She's a shi tsu, chihuaua cross, a whole 8 lbs of love
02-15-2014, 09:53 AM   #12
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I feel the same about my dog. Dogs are the best.
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