Human beings have personal abilities that enable them to live in an organized way. In social environments, individuals need to behave in the ways accepted by society. The mental health of people determines their behavior and functionality (Carlson, Bonnie E., et al). However, there are cases where a person is subjected to abuse which in turn affects his or her mental health. In such situations, an individual may develop difficulties in conducting himself or herself more acceptable as required by the societal norms. Mental health is defined as an individual cognitive, emotional and behavioral well-being that control how one feels, thinks and behave while interacting with others in the environment. Therefore, mental health forms an integral part of one's personality, and if it is affected, then a person fails to behave and reason in acceptable ways (Springer, Kristen W., et al).
Abuse refers to the act of subjecting a person to practices or behaviors that is likely to adverse outcomes on his well-being. According to the World Health Organization (2015), there are four types of abuses namely physical abuse, psychological abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. When a person is exposed to these abuses, he or she is likely to suffer from mental disorders. In most cases, violations result in chronic depression, anxiety, and trauma which have a tremendous impact on the psychological well-being of an individual (Springer, Kristen W., et al). The effects of abuses on individuals may occur within a short period (short-term) or may last a long time (long-term). Subjecting a person to abuses results in adverse impacts on his or her behavioral, cognitive and emotional well-being while interacting with others. This paper seeks to explain the effects of abuse on mental health.
Psychological abuse is a form of behavior that causes mental or emotional harms to people. Even though the abuse does not cause detrimental effects on the body, but the victims experience pain and distress which negatively affects his or her mental well-being. Psychological abuse is associated with domestic and family violence. There are no perfect relationships. However, when a person abuses his or her partner repeatedly and deliberately, it becomes abusive. An individual with intentions to make others feel scared and bad about themselves expose them to psychological abuse. Exposure to psychological abuse causes a person to develop low self-esteem towards him or herself. As a result, an individual loses confidence in thinking, feeling and behaving (Anda, Robert F., et al).
Psychological abuse significantly affects the emotional stability of an individual. In most cases, victims of abuses fail to control their emotions when faced with critical situations that require sound thinking. Psychological abuse also interferes with the cognitive reasoning of an individual. Social environments require people who have good mental well-being to interact with others in normal ways (Anda, Robert F., et al). However, people who are subjected to abuse cannot exercise sound thinking and rational decision making. Abuse makes a person to leave a lonely life and excludes him or herself from others because of the personal hatred that he or she develops when exposed to abuses. As a result, mental well-being is affected, and the victim experience challenges when making critical decisions in life (Anda, Robert F., et al).
The pain and distress that individual experiences, when subjected to abuses, tend to leave a permanent mark that alters the mental well-being. For instance, a person who encounters abuses over and over again may develop severe depression that eventually causes the detrimental impact on his or her thinking. The mental health of such people usually gets weakened, some of the victims may lack concentration when engaged in critical concepts and sessions that require sound reasoning. Additionally, people suffering from psychological abuse have poor judgment and cannot take part in normal reasoning when faced with critical challenges. Therefore, it is evident that psychological abuse has negative impacts on mental health. Subjecting people to these abuses affects their level of thinking and reasoning that leads to poor mental well-being.
Sexual abuse is another form of abuse that causes severe effects on the mental health of the victims. This occurs when a person is harassed and forced to take part in sexual activities without his or consent. Sexual abuse is common among women and young girls, however, few cases are reported among men. A victim of sexual abuse usually develops phobia, fear, and distress towards himself or herself; typically, the victim decides to live a lonely life away from the public. In this regard, the person may experience stress after the incident making him or her have deep thoughts about life. Sexual abuse causes trauma to the affected people. During the events, the victims find it hard to cope with the normal life; most of the affected individuals believe that the society may not accept them as a result of what they passed through. Therefore, they continue to live with such notions which in turn affect their thinking and their perception towards life.
Besides, individuals who have been exposed to sexual abuse are prone to depression which tends to affect their rational thinking and reasoning. Their cognitive stability and functioning are lowered thereby making their mental health poor. The victims try to fight against a reoccurrence of the memory of the past incidences which also overworks their brains leading to mental disorders. Prolonged stress exposes the victims of sexual abuse which perhaps interfere with their normal thinking and cognitive reasoning. Many people who encountered sexual abuse at one point of their lives take long to accept and value themselves. As a result, the cognitive functioning, behavioral and emotional well-being becomes retarded. Cases of sexual abuse among children result in severe impacts on their mental development and growth. For instance, the victims face discrimination and segregation from their peers which in turn expose them to extreme stress. If the situation proceeds, the victims develop depression and eventually suffer from mental disorders. This is a clear indication that subjecting individuals to abuses such as sexual abuse poses a significant risk to their mental well-being. Therefore, abuse has a negative impact on mental health and people should be protected to minimize their occurrences.
When individuals especially children are neglected in life, it is termed as abuse which is likely to cause a detrimental impact on the overall cognitive growth and development. Besides, being neglected as a form of abuse has adverse effects on how individuals behave, feel and think about themselves in the social environment. Neglect makes a person feel useless and less important in society. As a result, such a person is likely to engage in poor decision making. Also, the person may take part in activities that are dangerous to his mental health. In the long-run, such individuals develop poor judgment and mental disorders because they are continued exposure to abuse. Besides, neglected individuals lack company to share their ideas and opinions about the critical nature of life. Therefore, they live to believe that whatever the decision they make is right. However, there are some which require consultation and the views of others to come up with concrete thinking. Negligence increase the chances of a person to have rigid thinking and reasoning that cannot be influenced by others who have a better understanding of the concept. Therefore, negligence as a form of abuse has negative impacts on the mental well-being of individuals.
Emotional abuse has far-reaching consequences to the mental health of an individual, and many people who are emotionally abused are finding it difficult to recover. Ideally, when it comes to the mental health of an individual, it surrounds perception, thinking, learning, and memory (Springer, Kristen W., et al). However, when someone is exposed to rigorous activities, it is bound to cause mental fatigue. Mental exhaustion is the continuous fatigue the mental wellbeing of an individual which prevents one from optimally engaging in healthy actions. Mental exhaustion has adverse effect on the mental wellbeing of an individual and has more effect even on the individual's alertness due to lack of sleep. For those who are emotionally affected, fatigue decreases their mental ability to work safely, and in extreme cases, it causes mental damage (Carlson, Bonnie E., et al).
The mental health risk caused by fatigue is sometimes dire to the health status of an individual. For instance, long-distance travelers who engage in long-haul distances are bound to be exhausted (Springer, Kristen W., et al). Furthermore, employees at their workplaces are another group of individuals who are often subjected to emotional abuse. When it comes to employee well-being, the idea of conceptual elements that alludes to the overall quality of an employee's daily experience and their functioning at work is critical. When an employee is subjected to mental abuse, their happiness and willingness to work are interfered with, and one is likely to underperform due to the emotional pressure. As a result, such employees who are constantly faced with the pressures of working under long hours will end up being mentally abused and as such make encounter pressures in their daily activities thus leading to stress and other health concerns (Springer, Kristen W., et al).
In conclusion, exposure of individual to abuses such as psychological or emotional abuse, sexual abuse, physical and negligence has adverse effects on their mental health. Psychological abuse interferes with the mental and emotional well-being of an individual. Sexual abuse enables the victims to develop fear, distress, phobia and cognitive retardation as a result of reoccurrences of memories of the past incidents. People who are neglected suffer the abuse which subjects them to illegal activities and engages in bad thinking which causes a tremendous effect on their mental health. On the other hand, physical abuse exposes the victims to high risks of developing mental disorders which eventually affects their mental well-being. Abuse is considered detrimental to the mental health of individuals and should not be practiced as it weakens a person's ability to accept emotional, behavioral and cognitive well-being. As discussed in this paper, it is evident that abuse has adverse effects on the mental health of individuals.
Anda, Robert F., et al. "The enduring effects of abuse and related adverse experiences in childhood." European archives of psychiatry and clinical neuroscience 256.3 (2016): 174-186.
Carlson, Bonnie E., et al. "Intimate partner abuse and mental health: The role of social support and other protective factors." Violence against women 8.6 (2012): 720-745.
Springer, Kristen W., et al. "Long-term physical and mental health consequences of childhood physical abuse: Results from a large population-based sample of men and women." Child abuse & neglect 31.5 (2017): 517-530.
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