Abigail Schiltz, M.S.P.A.S., PA-C, CAQ-Psych, talking with Autumn Brunia, D.O. in the DMU Clinic — Behavioral Health

May Is Mental Health Awareness Month: Understanding Psychosis

In the bustling rhythm of daily life, mental health often takes a backseat until it manifests in ways that can no longer be ignored. The month of May is recognized as Mental Health Awareness Month and serves as a reminder of the significance of mental health and the prevalence of mental health conditions. At Des Moines University Clinic — Behavioral Health, we are committed to sharing education about these issues, dispelling the myths and reducing the stigma associated with mental health conditions.

It’s a startling reality that one in five U.S. adults experiences mental illness each year. Despite these numbers, there’s an overarching silence and stigma surrounding the topic. Mental health conditions are far more common than many people realize, affecting individuals from all walks of life, regardless of age, gender or socioeconomic status.

Spotlight on Psychosis

One of the lesser-understood aspects of mental health is psychosis, a condition that affects between 15 and 100 individuals per 100,000 annually. Psychosis disrupts a person’s thoughts and perceptions, making it challenging for them to distinguish what’s real from what’s not. Although psychosis can manifest at any age, it most frequently begins in the late teens to mid-20s.

Psychosis is characterized by several key signs and symptoms, the most prominent being delusions and hallucinations. Key signs and symptoms of psychosis include delusions and hallucinations. Delusions are persistent false beliefs that are not based in reality, while hallucinations involve sensing things that aren’t present, such as seeing or hearing something that doesn’t exist. Other symptoms may include disorganized speech or behavior, social withdrawal and a noticeable decline in self-care.

These early warning signs often precede more pronounced symptoms and are a critical window for seeking help. With timely intervention and the right treatment plan, individuals experiencing psychosis can lead fulfilling lives.

Take the First Step Toward Help

Providers at DMU Clinic — Behavioral Health understand the complexity of psychosis and the challenges it presents not only to the individuals experiencing it but also to their families and loved ones. Effective treatment for psychosis generally combines antipsychotic medications with psychotherapy to manage symptoms and improve an individual’s quality of life.

Reaching out for help can be the first step toward recovery and wellness. If you or someone you know is seeking support for mental health issues, contact DMU Clinic — Behavioral Health. Providers are currently welcoming new patients.

Please call 515-271-1716 for more information or to schedule an appointment with a provider at DMU Clinic—Behavioral Health.

Disclaimer: This content is created for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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