What Is the Difference Between Mental and Physical Health?

Physical and mental health are important aspects of our lives. Though they are related, they are different concepts and…
a person holding the hands to the face

Physical and mental health are important aspects of our lives. Though they are related, they are different concepts and can affect us in unique ways. One problem is that there is a stigma in a lot of places regarding mental health care, which can discourage people from seeking professional guidance. There are often barriers to any type of health care, but there is often more judgment associated with mental health treatment. As a society, it’s necessary for us to work to eradicate this stigma and help people better understand how to protect their health. If you want to learn more, keep reading to find out what the difference is between mental and physical health.

What is the difference between mental and physical health?


Our physical health refers to our physical condition, including our body weight, fitness, and health conditions. If you had a heart condition, you’d want to go see of the best cardiologists in Los Angeles, not a psychologist. Heart problems can be a serious physical issue, but the causes of heart problems can, in some cases, have to do with mental health too. For example, if we are feeling stressed and anxious, that can cause us to have a heart attack or a stroke. Addressing issues like heart problems immediately is essential, though we need to learn to respond to our mental health crises with similar urgency.

Mental health is just as important as physical health. In fact, our mental health can affect our physical health. Likewise, if we are not physically active, that can lead to problems with our mental health, such as depression or anxiety. It is important to maintain both our mental and physical health, and to take care of both our body and our mind. Just as there are doctors for treating conditions like heart disease, there are also places that focus on mental health care, like the Alter mental health treatment center. Many of us are quick to look for help when we have a physical ailment, but fewer people are willing to prioritize caring for their mental health.

The good news is that despite the historical stigma that has affected many people with mental health conditions, the conversation is beginning to change. Prominent athletes and celebrities like Simone Biles have spoken eloquently about the need for more understanding surrounding mental health, and people are beginning to listen. If you’re experiencing symptoms that are affecting your quality of life, whether they’re mental or physical, you owe it to yourself to get evaluated by a qualified medical professional and learn about your treatment options.

How can you support your overall health and wellness?


There are some lifestyle changes you can make and practices you can adopt that will protect both your body and your mind. Sleep deprivation can have many negative effects on your health, including increased stress, anxiety, and depression. It can also lead to obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. In addition, sleep deprivation can impair your cognitive function, making it difficult to think clearly and make decisions. If you’re struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, it’s a good idea to talk to your healthcare provider to discuss possible solutions.

Therapy is a worthwhile investment too, even for those who don’t have a diagnosed mental health condition. Therapy can help you learn more about yourself, develop new skills, and find relief from stress, anxiety, and other problems. Therapy can be especially helpful if you’re going through a difficult time, such as a divorce or the death of a loved one. It can also help you manage chronic health conditions or deal with other life challenges.

There’s a lot to consider when thinking about your health, whether mental or physical. It’s also important to understand that mental and physical health may be different, but they aren’t completely separate. They can interact, and often mental health conditions can manifest with physical symptoms. If you’re experiencing pain, discomfort, or any symptoms that are affecting your daily life or activities, it’s always best to get yourself examined by a professional to make sure you don’t need any treatment. If you do, then you owe it to yourself to get the care you need, no matter which aspect of your health is of concern.