A List of Mental Illnesses
Mental illness is an umbrella term for various health conditions that cause changes to thoughts, feelings or behavior. Fortunately, it’s treatable and many people go on to lead productive lives after recovering.
In the United States, approximately 1 in 5 adults and adolescents experience mental illnesses* such as depression or anxiety disorders. This statistic is higher among women, children, and individuals who identify as more than two races.
Common symptoms of mental illness include changes in mood, thoughts and behavior, difficulties with social or work life, as well as thoughts of self-harming. Although these signs may be difficult to recognize, they should never go undetected.
Psychiatrists and other healthcare providers diagnose mental illnesses using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), published by the American Psychiatric Association. This handbook includes descriptions, criteria, and treatment options for each disorder; however, only a trained mental health professional is qualified to make an accurate diagnosis.
Over 200 distinct mental illnesses exist. These include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder and anxiety disorders.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by persistent thoughts or fears that are followed by rituals or behaviors. These habits are time-consuming, taking up an hour or more each day, and can cause significant distress or functional impairment.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychological disorder that arises after someone experiences a traumatic event such as a car accident, sexual assault or war-related incidents. Symptoms include intense fear and flashbacks.