Mental health is a psychological state of well-being characterized by sanity and the absence of mental disorders. Mentally healthy people make sound decisions in both behavioral and emotional areas. Mental illness, on the other hand, is characterized by the presence of mind-related disorders. Experts are looking into the relationship between aging and mental health. Adults over the age of seventy, also known as senior citizens, are more likely to suffer from mental illness than people of any other age group. These senior citizens, who frequently suffer from mental illnesses, are often neglected by society, including family members. According to social norms, sick people should be cared for by their immediate family or close friends. Despite the challenge that one can face living with mentally ill individuals, the society should abandon social stratification tendencies which lead to stigmatization against people suffering from mental illnesses (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2014). Furthermore, there are a variety of remedies to treating the condition. Mental illness can be as a result of distress in most cases of old age unlike those who are born with the condition. We are set to unravel a case management scenario on mentally ill people dissecting causes and available remedies to dealing with mental health in the society at large.
Jane is eighteen years old and a student. She lives in her parents’ home, her older brother and a smaller sister in Wilmington, New Castle County. Her family members are concerned that she has a weird behavior of late, thus booking her into a case management class where I am to diagnose her condition giving recommendations for treatment. The most bizarre of situations is that Jane cannot wash anything because she claims that the water has water bugs that will crawl out of the pipes and attack her. I begin to probe the problem she is suffering from by asking her parents the following questions to determine the origin of the phobia. Has Jane ever encountered an attack from water bugs? What is the mental health history for her? How does Jane perform academically at school? How does Jane play in other chores for instance in the house? What do you think are the causes of the abrupt change of behavior based on your assessments?
Jane and her parents live in New Castle County and are privileged to have cultural amenities available near them where I also live thus better placed to handle the assessment and treatment procedure. My diagnostic strategy involves both the functional and categorical diagnostic tools used by psychologists and medical practitioners. All these diagnoses require that one also have the additional know-how on diagnosing even other ailments such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other related ones. The assessment and treatment plan involves outpatient visits and short inpatient sessions to assess the progress of the patient, or in case the condition worsens. Treatments of mental disorders are interactive to engage the patient which boosts recovery from the condition. The practitioner is expected to adopt teaching and probing skills which determine the level of damage on the patient suggesting measures taken next. Most effective ways in treating mental conditions are behavior therapy and social learning theories. These two methods inculcate coping skills in patients helping them discover themselves and get notice of their surroundings hence self-awareness is created and awareness of those who are around them.
The practitioners’ attitude towards the patient is paramount and counts in the recovery cycle of the patient. The improvement continuity of the patient relies on the hopefulness of the doctor responsible for the patient. Giving up on a patient is the worst case scenario for the growth cycle of the patient. Optimism and channeling positive energy could prove very helpful in this situation. As a matter of fact, practitioners are taught and understand that hopefulness is a vital ingredient in the journey to recovery especially in mental illness case (Paniagua & Yamada, 2013). There are obvious cases where chronic ill patients stay under treatment, takes a long time to diagnose and the treatment plan get underway. These patients treated by hopeful and optimistic medics get to recover and finally live normal lives again. Positivity, again, makes one go an extra mile, away from the regular call of duty researching and devising solutions that no one else has come across and that is how people get to innovate solutions.
The targeted long-term intermittent treatment therapy is one effective way to deal with severe mental disabilities. The method is economical, brief and efficient and best of all attributes is that it can take place away from the hospital. This type of treatment involves intensive therapy sessions mostly every day for patients that are suffering from acute functional difficulty and symptomatology (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). This procedure requires a team of practitioners including a psychiatrist, a case worker, and a psychologist present. All these professionals come into play in the bid to avoid a risk of hospitalization of the patient and more so saving in the cost. The cost of treatment at this phase is higher than the following stages due to the justified intensive sessions involved with some professionals concerned. This increased effort in treatment in this period is crucial at this juncture which gradually reduces as the patient functioning increases and the recovery take shape. The sequence of therapy begins at every day, then reduces to every five days in a week and finally becomes twice every week, all this depending on the tendency to the quick recovery of the patient. At this juncture, the patient has progressed well. Thus the psychologist can reduce their visits to weekly, a fortnight and finally into monthly sessions. The doctor at this stage is prompt as per the needs of the client.
Depending on the progress of the patient, the psychologist can hand over the treatment to a case manager. The case manager is set to visit the client after every fortnight or monthly sessions to monitor the progress and in the event of any issues. The reasoning behind shifting these roles is to significantly reduce cost because the client is in good shape and requires less supervision. The case manager should continue functional status monitoring of the patient to ensure that progress is positive. The patient is also put into continuous learning and rehabilitation continues. The primary importance is to make sure that the therapist is reachable at all times and treatment given accordingly depending on the functioning level of the client. The chain of sessions should be appropriately paced with no missing therapy sessions to ensure there is continued improvement noted all the time. Learning sessions should be progressive such that the most useful in a particular part should take place every time a similar problem occurs. This long-term intermittent method ensures that the patient develops competence with coping with given problems and diminishes chances of a relapse occurring. The extended period the whole procedure is for making the client deal with exasperating symptoms that could lead to relapse. Many methods in this model of treatment require competent professional with a sharp mind in making decisions which are a factor to the fast and continued recovery of the client.
The second model to treatment is the Cognitive type which incorporates behavioral, social skills training. Seriously mental ill patients can undergo social skills training for treatment of their condition which is an innovation that was a revolution to the psychological treatment field (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2014). Social skills’ training is an approved method of treating acute ailments such as schizophrenia. It has better outcomes compared with other treatment methods. This model consists of coaching, recorded modeling, rehearsals, live modeling, etc. The practitioners in control are supposed to possess unmatched problem solving and communication skills. Social skills training aimed at improving problem-solving and communication skills are well suited to group therapies. Group therapies are obviously cost efficient and help the clients use one clinician for sessions. This scenario helps the clinician compare effectively different measures applied on clients thus noting the most effective. These two models explained above are useful in the social realm for patients to receive treatment while away from the hospital.
Both formal and informal support networks exist in the aid to mentally challenged individuals. Formal systems are set up by the authorities for instance governments that put up community resources available and affordable to the general public. These faculties receive equipment plus salaried professionals taking charge of the resources and remunerated by the Government. Such facilities are often made to complement the otherwise more expensive private services. Governments run the services which if well equipped and maintained house many from disadvantaged backgrounds. The informal support systems are those Peer support systems existent in the community (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Informal peer support can be set up by well-wishers who observe and notice a gap in the community for such a facility. Peer support groups may be licensed or recognized by the government but do not receive support directly from the authorities. They can be set up by Non-Governmental Organizations that aim at attaining proper medical care for communities. These facilities often fall into categories mainly age groups such as for the elderly or children and adolescents. Both the formal and informal channels go a long way to ensuring mentally ill patients receive proper healthcare and finally recover to lead healthy lives. Stratification and stigmatization of people suffering from mental disorders should cease through civic education from authorities and organizations tasked with the welfare of the whole community. People should be made to understand that mental illness is like any other ailments that with proper care can stop leaving the individual to lead a healthy life.
American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM-5®). American Psychiatric Pub.
Paniagua, F. A., & Yamada, A. M. (Eds.). (2013). Handbook of multicultural mental health: Assessment and treatment of diverse populations. Academic Press.
Rogers, A., & Pilgrim, D. (2014). A sociology of mental health and illness. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).