Men and women differ not only in physical aspects but also in psychological, emotional, and physiological aspects. Men usually tend to go inside their caves when they face an issue and usually refrain from opening up. Whereas women tend to indulge in other’ problems or pain to overcome their own problems. Men and women often tend to visit a specialist whenever a physical problem occurs e.g., headache, tooth decay, eyesight issues, etc. but usually skip visiting a specialist for mental health issues.

The book by John Gray, “Men are from mars and women are from Venus” is an entire bible classifying the traits of both Genders lucidly. This New York bestseller book takes us on a tour covering all the aspects one needs to know about the opposite gender. Most of the serious topics are covered in a glee manner in this book, which helps both the genders understand, implement and become gender tolerant.

 Mental health issues have been observed in every one out of four adults, but speaking about it and finding a solution for it remains taboo. Common mental disorders (CMD) include depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorders.

According to the reports published by Project HOPE, women carry mental health burdens even when they shouldn’t. Every 2 out of 3 don’t receive proper mental health care. After the depression, Suicide has become the second leading cause of death in the age group of 15-29. The report highlights women facing mental health the hardest in underdeveloped, war-torn, disaster-hit countries than in developed countries. The reason behind this is due to lack of health facilities in their vicinity, gender-based violence, low socioeconomic status, household biasness, societal biasness, etc.

It is reported that one in five women face rape or attempted rape in their lifetime. Most of the time rape, molestation, and violence are observed to be done by a family member only. This shakes the belief of a woman and reduces her desire to live further. This results in an increase in suicide attempts.

TYPES OF MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES FACED BY WOMEN – there are a few common mental disorders that are seen in women. Here are a few of them discussed with solutions and ways forward.

1.      DEPRESSION -  It is not a one-day thing; it involves a series of events due to piling on. This results in a Dominic effect, which begins with the loss of appetite, feeling sad, missed out, unsuccessful, worthless, and unheard. It is very common in almost all generations. The school-going kid feels left out if not selected for the football team. The college-going teenager feels worthless when not selected in the interview for placements. The working person feels stuck when their efforts go in vain. The married person feels hopeless when they are unable to meet the requirements of family, partner, children, office, etc. The last stage of life often leaves everyone aloof due to limited physical strength and more dependency. Every stage has its own set of problems and methods to overcome, but if the individual is unable to overcome the situation and fight back efficiently, it results in a serious mental health problem that requires a veteran to pull him out of it. WAY FORWARD – there is no disease in the current tie which cannot be cured. At least there are primary medications or therapy available for everything. Depression cannot be eradicated suddenly from a person’s life. The Bollywood actress, Deepika Padukone was one of the victims of depression. She came out with her “Little Black Book” for others to come out of depression by penning her own experiences in it. In such a scenario, the patient should never lose hope, or belief in himself. The day you lose hope, even the biggest surgeries and medicine won’t be effective. Keeping utmost faith and confidence in themselves, the doctors and family members can show recovery at a faster rate.

2.      ANXIETY – A situation in which a person undergoes fear, stress, and restlessness due to certain reasons. One might face anxiety due to work pressure, exams, phobias, and physical condition like thyroid, etc. The condition is a result of constant worry in different age groups. The students face anxiety due to the increased competition and syllabus. College students face anxiety due to unemployment. The working category faces anxiety due to increased responsibilities with only a handful of money. The married category faces this CMD due to financial crunch, inflation, lack of basic facilities, etc. WAY FORWARD – if a person is suffering from the above symptoms, he or she should rush to the doctor instead of letting the disease increase manifold. Therapy, counseling sessions, change in routine, etc. can help deal with such common mental disorders. Opening up about one’s own mental disorder is not a weakness, it takes a lot of effort to come out of the comfort zone and admit to the anxiety.

3.      BIPOLAR DISORDER – A Common mental disorder involves regular highs and lows in a person. The one suffering from this kind of disorder usually has an adrenaline rush and a noradrenaline rush at certain times. A student feels high when they are selected for the school team and at the same time feels low when replaced by someone else. A college student can have an adrenaline rush when they do well in exams but can face an adrenaline rush when the results are not up to the mark. This CMD is a mixed episode of feelings. WAY FORWARD – This type of disorder is very common in youngsters. They tend to compare their lifestyle, income, and materials with other people in the group. Under peer pressure, they tend to start consuming alcohol, drugs, etc. This only gives temporary comfort, but the repercussions are way harsher. It is absolutely alright to feel low sometimes due to genuine reasons, but it should not a toll on the routine, work-life, and personal life.

All these common medical disorders need to be heard and solved by professionals. Piling on cannot be helpful to any gender. When comparing mental health issues, women tend to be more sensitive and vulnerable in facing these issues.

TYPES OF PHYSICAL HEALTH ISSUES FACED BY WOMEN - In the stage of puberty, a girl undergoes many changes in her body. These changes include both physical and emotional. Girls should be given proper knowledge about the changes occurring so that they do not panic and be open to asking questions. Menstrual cycle and menstrual hygiene is a topic that should be made gender-neutral and gender sensitive. The first guide of a girl who has attained puberty is her mother and sister in the household and the second guide is her school teacher.

There are many myths associated with menstruation but the ICHHORI website clears it all for all age groups women. The site is for women, by women, and of women. It covers almost all topics that for some reason are put into the taboo category. Every issue, every right, every disease is covered keeping it women-centric.

1.      PREMENSTRUAL SYNDROME - Affecting almost 90% of the women population across the globe, premenstrual syndrome is a combination of physical and emotional changes experienced by a woman in her reproductive age. The symptoms of this syndrome range from mild to severe in different women and mostly affect women above 30 years of age. The normal menstrual cycle in a woman is of 28 days, in the premenstrual syndrome condition severe abdominal pain, bloating, etc. is experienced between the duration of ovulation and the next period's arrival. The pain in premenstrual syndrome is similar to that of the menstrual cycle, causing a woman to skip her job or any other activity. WAY FORWARD - Exercise, meditate, and do yoga – there are certain asanas in yoga that help reduce the pain caused due to periods. Getting involved in exercise and meditation not only boosts immunity but also helps reduce the chances of depression and anxiety as one will remain indulged in some activity. Nutritious food and a balanced diet – a healthy diet for women is very necessary. One should always prefer food with rich vitamins and proteins so the body gets enough nutrition to function and no extraoral supplements are needed.

2.  WOMEN INFERTILITY - to conceive, a woman needs to have a healthy female reproductive organ. It includes ovaries. The fallopian tube, uterus, etc. These organs play an important role in conceiving and pregnancy. Ovulation is the most important factor for a woman who is planning to conceive. Every month a woman of her reproductive age normally releases an egg for fertilization. If intercourse occurs during ovulation and sperm is successful enough to fertilize the egg, it results in fertilization. Due to certain reasons egg is not released regularly. These include a woman’s hormonal imbalance, eating disorder, disease like thyroid, severe stress, etc. WAY FORWARD - In vitro fertilization (IVF) – with the advent of biotechnology, a test tube baby has now become a ray of hope to parents with few complications. Surrogacy – a woman with a defective mitochondrion has issues with conceiving and becoming a mother, if a healthy mitochondria donor from a woman is received, motherhood can be experienced. Surrogacy laws have now become stricter due to violations and exploitation of the surrogate mother. Parents plan a child in a surrogate and then abandon her, leaving the surrogate woman frustrated and aimless.

For a woman, both mental and physical health should be in sync for a better lifestyle and relationship point of view. If any kind of imbalance occurs in either of them, it directly affects her routine, work life, and personal relationship. It is always good to keep a check on yourself for sound mental and physical health. 

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