What Are the 9 Types of Mental Disorders?

Reviewed on 2/26/2021
Mental disorders like physical disorders have a spectrum ranging from mild to severe.
Mental disorders like physical disorders have a spectrum ranging from mild to severe.

Mental disorders like physical disorders have a spectrum ranging from mild to severe. The following are the different types of mental disorders:

Substance-related disorders: These are addictive problems. Some people are more predisposed to developing substance-use disorders than others. Genetics, dysfunctional family, emotionally or sexually abusive environment during childhood could be some of the triggering factors. Diagnosis of a substance abuse disorder is based on evidence of dependence, social impairment, risky behavior, and so on.

Common symptoms may include:

  • Craving the substance or activity
  • Developing a tolerance, which requires more of the substance
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms after stopping

Common types of substance-related disorders are:

  • Alcohol use disorder (AUD)
  • Drugs, such as cannabis, use disorder
  • Gambling disorder

Neurodevelopmental disorders: Disorders, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), cover a wide range of problems that usually begin in infancy or early childhood. Typically, before they even attend grade school.

Common symptoms may include:

  • Inattention or hyperactivity
  • Deficits in social interaction and communication
  • Learning deficits in areas of reading, writing, and mathematics

Other common examples of neurodevelopmental disorders include:

Psychotic disorders: They are serious illnesses in which a person loses touch with reality. These disorders make it hard for someone to think clearly, make good judgments, respond emotionally, and communicate effectively.

Common symptoms are:

  • Delusions (having beliefs that are not true e.g., thinking a person is God)
  • Hallucinations (seeing or smelling things that are not there)
  • Disorganized thinking and speech (garbled words that make no sense)

Common psychotic disorders are:

Affective disorder: It causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out daily tasks.

Common symptoms may include:

Common types of brain disorders are:

Depressive disorders: Also known as clinical depression. Depressive disorders come in the sense of constant hopelessness and despair. This may make it difficult to eat, sleep, work, and enjoy friends and recreational activities.

Common symptoms may include:

Common depressive disorders include:

Obsessive-compulsive disorders: It traps people in endless cycles of thoughts and behaviors.

Common symptoms are:

  • A person needs to have things in a symmetrical or perfect order
  • Excessive cleaning and/or handwashing
  • Usually spends at least an hour a day on these thoughts or behaviors
  • Having distressing thoughts that are difficult to control
  • Anxiety and panic episodes

Some of the types of these disorders include:

Trauma- and stressor-related disorders: They occur in people after they have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event. This also includes those who experience recurring disturbing events, such as first-aid responders, war heroes, rape survivors. It can even happen to those who experience the sudden, unexpected death of a loved one. To be diagnosed with one of the types of stressor-related disorders, an adult must experience all the following for at least a month:

  • One re-experiencing symptom
  • One avoidance symptoms
  • Two arousal and reactivity symptoms
  • Two cognition and mood symptoms

Common types may include:

Personality disorders: People with personality disorders have trouble perceiving and relating to situations and people. They typically suffer from significant problems and limitations in relationships, social activities, work, and school.

Common symptoms may include:

  • Persistent lying, stealing, using aliases, conning others
  • Unstable and intense relationships
  • Failure to recognize others’ needs and feelings

Common types of personality disorders are:

Anxiety disorders: Those with an anxiety disorder face this excessive worry or fear every day. These symptoms can get worse over time and interfere with daily activities.

Common symptoms may include:

  • Restlessness
  • Muscle tension
  • Sudden and repeated attacks of intense fear
  • Palpitation, sweating, and crying episodes

Common types of anxiety disorders include:

What are the common treatments for mental disorders?

Episodes of mental illness can come and go during different periods in people’s lives. Some people experience only one episode of illness and fully recover. For others, it recurs throughout their lives. Most mental illnesses can be effectively treated. Recognizing the early signs and symptoms of mental illness and accessing effective treatment early is important. The earlier treatment starts, the better the outcome. Below are a few common ways:

It is rarely possible for someone with a mental illness to make the symptoms go away just by the strength of will. People with a mental illness need the same understanding and support given to people with a physical illness. People with mental illness may be at risk of harmful alcohol and other drug use. This makes treatment more complex, so effectively managing alcohol or other drug uses is important. The risk of suicide is heightened for people with some mental illnesses, particularly soon after diagnosis or release from the hospital.

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References
WebMD. Types of Mental Illness. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/mental-health-types-illness#1

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