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Mental health rehabilitation refers to a psychiatric patient’s recovery from the condition or conditions that prevent him from productive work and studies, or otherwise negatively affect his quality of life. This type of rehabilitation is multidimensional and multidisciplinary in that it involves most aspects of a patient’s life. The amount of time required for a patient’s mental health rehabilitation depends upon the individual, the severity of his illness and the extent of his social support system. Seemingly basic and simple steps, however, can markedly improve the rate and extent of a patient’s recovery. For this reason, the best tips for mental health rehabilitation usually include treatment plan compliance, exercise, rest and proper nutrition, among other suggestions.
Finding the right mental health provider is critical for a patient to navigate the necessary milestones required for mental health rehabilitation. The patient must be able to trust his physician or therapist as they enter into a recovery “contract” that requires honesty and disclosure. Honest self-appraisals of mood, behavior and compliance with the prescribed treatment plan are essential. Mental health rehabilitation rarely progresses in a straight line. A patient must be open with his mental health provider about detours and breakdowns along the journey.
Another important tip for mental health rehabilitation involves medication compliance. The psychiatric patient must either take all medications as prescribed — or honestly report those medications omitted and why. If this degree of transparency is not part of the patient-therapist contract, then the mental health provider is prescribing and reporting on a nonexistent treatment plan. In conjunction with medication compliance, the patient must avoid self-medicating, or treating his symptoms with alcohol, prescription medications unknown to his physician or street drugs. A patient’s self-medicating behavior can negate or obscure signs of mental health rehabilitation and improvement.
Finally, there are the mental health rehabilitation tips considered to be “common sense” but which are often considerably more difficult to put into place with regularity and commitment. A regular exercise program, for example, has been linked with improvements in mental health and mood in studies too numerous to list. The benefits of exercise last much longer than an activity’s initial endorphin rush. Improved nutrition can help strengthen the body, lessen fatigue and improve mood. In addition to regular exercise and improved nutrition, obtaining adequate rest and sleep is necessary for regulation of mood, energy and neurotransmitter production.
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