Coping with Hepatitis is an extremely challenging process. Not only does it impair physical capabilities, more often than not, it also has a significant toll on mental health. In light of this year’s theme for World Hepatitis Day ‘We’re not waiting,’ let’s talk about the impact of Hepatitis on mental health.
The physical symptoms of Hepatitis directly correlate to the mental ones. Fatigue, jaundice, abdominal pain, and loss of appetite are distressing, and result in decreased energy levels and disrupted daily activities, leading to frustration and helplessness. As the body battles the infection, individuals experience a general decline in overall well-being, which can contribute to anxiety and distress.
One of the significant challenges faced by those living with hepatitis is the stigma associated with the disease. There are a lot of misconceptions and fears associated with its transmission that lead to discrimination and social isolation. Being sick already takes a significant toll on physical and mental health. On top of this, if there’s stigma and shame around the disease, it can leave an individual emotionally vulnerable. Stigmatization also impacts relationships, employment opportunities, and social interactions, which makes it immensely difficult to operate within society. This ultimately culminates into mental health problems, and worsens already existing ones.
“More than 2% of the World population suffers from Hepatitis. Both in causes and impact, Mental Health plays a pivotal role.” – Kapil Gupta, CEO and Founder of Solh Wellness.
Depression is a common mental health issue faced by individuals with hepatitis. A 2013 study published in the Iranian Journal of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences reveals how depression is rampant among Hepatitis patients. This can be attributed to the impact of hepatitis on liver function which affects neurotransmitters in the brain, contributing to the development of depression. Moreover, Hepatitis patients being treated with Interferon therapy show high prevalence of depression.
For individuals with chronic hepatitis, the journey can be particularly arduous. Living with a chronic illness requires continuous medical monitoring, regular treatments, and lifestyle adjustments, which can contribute to psychological distress. The uncertainty regarding long-term outcomes can result in chronic stress and anxiety.
In these difficult times, a strong support system is essential. While family and friends can give emotional support, it isn’t enough to take care of serious mental health situations like depression. Moreover, living with and caring for an ill person can also have an effect on the mental health of their caregivers. In both cases, professional support is essential. This is where Solh Wellness can prove to be a great option.
Solh Wellness is a preventive mental health platform that provides accessible, 24/7 available, affordable, and personalized mental health tools and solutions to individuals for free, while making mental health accepted. It provides a range of mental health tools and solutions to empower individuals in supporting their own mental well-being.
Solh offers three categories of tools:
- Self-help: Free tools for supporting your own mental health, including goal setting, mood analytics, self-assessments, and learning resources.
- Community support: Interact with others in a safe space through support groups, journaling, Solh Buddy, and anonymous posting.
- Expert services: Professional help available 24/7, including counseling, therapy packages, and allied therapies like yoga and art therapy. The Talk Now feature provides free professional support instantly.
Maintaining mental strength is vital when confronting serious illnesses such as Hepatitis. Solh Wellness can serve as a support system to nurture your mental health while you embark on your journey to recovery.