Millions of Americans live with physical disabilities. Having a physical disability doesn't just impact their physical health, it affects their mental health as well. With their focus on physical needs, it is no wonder that their mental health can be neglected. Across the disabled community, common themes have emerged that impact the mental health and overall well-being of these individuals.
Isolation and Depression
Research has shown that many experience a profound sense of loneliness and social isolation. As a result of these factors, the risk for depression among those with physical disabilities is high. Other mental health issues like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can develop as a result of inaccessible environments and misunderstandings with non-disabled individuals. Negative interactions in social situations can lead to social anxiety and feelings of being isolated or shunned because of their disability. The physical and mental impact of loneliness can be tremendous. New studies have shown that loneliness is directly linked to a number of other health concerns. Dementia, heart disease, decreased immunity, and premature death can result from loneliness.
Inability to Work
Physical disabilities often impact the individual's ability to work. While financial assistance is available through Medicaid and Social Security, these benefits are limited and may not be able to help the individual meet all their needs. Several studies have linked stress and worry related to financial issues or debt to a higher risk for mental illness. Being unable to work can also result in anxiety and depression for many people. A huge part of your identity is tied to your work and your career. Being able to work and find a part of their identity in that work environment can have a profound impact on the mental health of the individual.
Helping someone you love who has a physical disability talk about their feelings and worries can help ease their sense of being alone and isolated. As you interact with your disabled friend or loved one, look for signs that they may not be getting enough social interaction or that they are feeling depressed. Regular visits, outings, and physical therapy can help boost their mood and improve their mental health.
At Legacy Freedom, we have helped hundreds of physically disabled clients work through their anxiety, stress, depression, or PTSD. Getting to the root of why you feel the way you do is the most crucial part of our holistic therapy process. By understanding where these negative thoughts and feelings come from, we can help you learn new ways to confront them and overcome them using positive tools and coping methods.
By combining traditional talk therapy with alternative treatment methods, our holistic approach to mental health care allows us to treat the whole person, not just their mental health conditions. Our team is made up of highly skilled therapists, a nutritionist, and a physical therapist. When combined with group therapy sessions and alternative treatments, our approach to your mental health and well-being is unlike anything you have experienced before.
Don't let your depression, anxiety, stress, or PTSD keep you feeling isolated. Call or click today to get started with quality mental health care from Legacy Freedom!
Join us next time for more on the impact of physical disabilities on your mental health.