Mental Disorders in Iran on Par With Global Pace

Mental Disorders in Iran on Par With Global PaceMental Disorders in Iran on Par With Global Pace

B ased on recent statistics, 23% of the Iranian population suffers from mental disorders, which is on par with the rate of mental illness growth in developed and developing countries as seen in global statistics, vice-president of the Association of Psychologists, Majid Sadeghi said.

Stressing the importance of mental health, he said the number of people suffering from mental disorders stands third after cardiovascular diseases and road accidents, which top the list of health issues in Iran. In fact, in a four-member family, one person may suffer from  mental anxiety,” he said, quoted by ISNA.

He also said two-thirds of ‘serene mental disorders’ include anxiety and depression. Women are 1.5 to 2 times more prone to anxiety and depression due to their physiological differences and social role that can last their whole lifetime.

Sadeghi, who is a faculty member of Tehran University of Medical Science, said changes in the brain can lead to mental disorder, which is more plausible for an individual in the second and third decade of his life “due to high brain performance.” Likewise, elderly patients would suffer from dementia and Alzheimer’s.

He noted that mental disorders can affect physical performance and create unusual thoughts, changes in sleeping patterns, anorexia, lack of libido, depression and extreme mood swings, as some of the side effects. Abnormal headaches, abdominal pain, indigestion, menstrual problems and outspread pain in the body are other physical symptoms of this illness.

 In Children

Hyperactivity and attention deficit are two forms of mental disorders among children that are more prevalent in boys rather than girls. Following a correct parenting method, parents should adjust their expectations to the capacity and ability of their children compared to others, to prevent serious problems in the future.

Due to the fact that other untreated diseases can cause mental disorders, he said: “By controlling and treating diabetes and high blood pressure, we can prevent mental problems.”

Migration from rural areas to cities and abroad is another factor which may increase the possibility of mental illness in individuals because of urbanization, air pollution and difficulty to acclimatize to new environments.

To tackle mental disorder, healthy nutrition, changes in lifestyle, physical exercise and spending time with family are some of the effective solutions. To encourage mentally-ill people to undergo treatment, “we should avoid labeling and isolating them and remove the fear of social stigma,” he added.