What are the 7 main mental disorders

Mental disorders are classified into two groups – psychological disorders and behavioral disorders. There are hundreds of different mental conditions that affect millions of people around the world each year. Below are lists of the 7 most common mental disorders.

1. Depression

Depression is a main mental disorder. It’s characterized by the presence of depressed mood and/or anhedonia (reduced ability to experience pleasure) for at least 2 weeks, as well as other symptoms such as weight loss or gain, insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleep), fatigue, psychomotor agitation or retardation (the opposite of what you’d expect—either too much or too little physical movement), feelings of worthlessness and/or guilt, difficulty concentrating and making decisions, thoughts of death or suicide.

There are two types of depression: major depressive disorder and persistent depressive disorder. Major  Depressive disorder is a main mental disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. The symptoms of this disease include depression, insomnia and lack of appetite. Depression can be caused by many factors including genetics and certain medications.

Persistent depressive disorder is a main mental disorder. It affects around 1 in 10 people and it is characterized by persistent depressive symptoms that don’t respond to treatment.

Persistent depressive disorder is a mood disorder, which means that it affects the way you feel. If you have this condition, you may feel depressed most of the day and have trouble functioning normally in society. You may also have lost interest in activities that once made you happy, like socializing or working out.

2. Anxiety

Anxiety disorders are often accompanied by panic attacks, which are sudden feelings of fear or terror that come out of nowhere. Panic attacks can cause physical symptoms like heart palpitations and sweating, but they do not usually last long—they usually peak within ten minutes and then subside after about an hour. However, they may return over time and get worse if you don’t treat them properly with therapy or medication.

If you experience anxiety frequently or powerfully enough to affect your day-to-day life, it might be worth seeing a therapist or counselor. These professionals can help you identify triggers so you can avoid them when possible; they may also teach you techniques for coping with stressful situations without letting them trigger your panic attack symptoms.

3. Bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a mental illness that causes extreme shifts in mood, energy and activity levels. People with bipolar disorder experience both depressive phases and manic phases.

It can be hard to diagnose because it looks similar to other mental illnesses such as anxiety or depression.

Some people have symptoms that come and go with no clear pattern, while others have periods when they are not experiencing any symptoms at all.

During a manic episode someone may feel extremely happy and energetic for days or even weeks at a time. They may also experience rapid speech and an increase in goal-oriented activity such as working on projects or starting new hobbies that they’ve never tried before.

During these times some people will spend too much money on unnecessary purchases or make plans that are unachievable like quitting their jobs or moving across the country without thinking through the consequences first.

4. Schizophrenia 

Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder that affects about 1% of the population. It is characterized by hallucinations, delusions, and disorganized thinking and behavior. The exact causes of schizophrenia are unknown, but it is believed that genetic factors play a role in its development.

Schizophrenia usually starts in young adulthood and affects men more often than women. It is characterized by a loss of contact with reality (psychosis). The symptoms of schizophrenia include false beliefs or feelings of being controlled by an outside force (delusions) and disconnected thoughts or speech (disorganized speech). 

People with schizophrenia may also experience visual hallucinations (seeing things that are not there) or hear voices inside their head that give them commands or tell them to do things they would not normally do.

Some people with schizophrenia may have difficulty controlling their emotions and behavior, which can lead to problems in school or work and cause arguments with others. They may also have difficulty maintaining close relationships because they cannot understand other people’s feelings or appreciate social rules such as personal space boundaries and acceptable conversation topics.


ADHD is a main mental disorder that affects about 5% of children and 2.5% of adults in the United States. It is characterized by problems focusing and paying attention, difficulty controlling behavior, and hyperactivity (over-activity).

The symptoms of ADHD usually begin before age 7, but can continue through adolescence and adulthood. Children with ADHD may have trouble paying attention in school, misbehave and not pay attention in class, avoid tasks that they find boring or difficult, have trouble organizing tasks and activities, feel restless or fidgety instead of sitting still for long periods of time, and talk excessively.

Adults with ADHD often feel restless or driven by a sense of urgency. They cannot relax if they have an unfulfilled task they need to complete. They are more likely than others to be disorganized and forgetful; some have trouble managing their finances due to impulsive spending habits or failure to save money for long-term goals such as retirement. Adults may also have difficulty maintaining relationships due to their irritability or impulsiveness when dealing with stressful situations or people who upset them.

6. Autism spectrum disorder

Autism spectrum disorder is a main mental disorder because it is characterized by social interaction deficits, communication difficulties, and restricted and repetitive behaviors.

Social interaction deficits are characterized by a lack of social reciprocity, difficulty initiating or sustaining conversation with others, lack of eye contact, failure to react to other people’s emotions, and inappropriate body language.

Communication difficulties include problems understanding and using nonverbal communication (such as facial expressions or gestures), difficulty adjusting speech to fit the situation (such as talking too loudly or too softly), repeating phrases over and over again without meaning, and not responding when someone speaks to them directly.

Restricted and repetitive behaviors include rigid adherence to routines (such as always eating meals at exactly the same time every day), repetitive use of objects or actions (such as spinning in circles repeatedly), and obsessive interests in specific topics.


Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that develops in some people who have experienced or witnessed a life-threatening event, such as military combat, sexual assault, or a natural disaster.

People with PTSD may experience flashbacks or nightmares; feel stressed, anxious, or on edge; or have trouble sleeping. They may also be more irritable or angry than usual and have trouble concentrating. Some people with PTSD are unable to remember certain events at all.

It’s common for people with PTSD to avoid situations that remind them of the traumatic event. They may also have trouble feeling close to others and be less interested in activities they used to enjoy. People with PTSD may feel detached or numb and have trouble experiencing positive feelings such as love and happiness.

Most of you will experience some mental disorder throughout your lifetime. The disorders presented here are the most common. They usually begin in late adolescence through young adulthood and affect men and women equally. If you are diagnosed with any of these disorders they are highly treatable and there is hope.

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