In 1981 Dr Alexander et al did an experiment with rats that were raised either in isolation or in a large colony. At 65 days of age half of the rats in each environment were moved to the other colony. At 80 days they were given different solutions of fluids and morphine. The end result was that the rats raised in a colony avoided the morphine because it interferes with complex, species-specific behavior.
Service members often refer to their unit as a “second family” who they can turn to for support, friendship, and even protection. It’s not unusual for a recently reintegrated Service member to feel as though that support community has disappeared after returning from deployment, as they are no longer surrounded by their unit. For this reason, it’s important for Service members to pursue social wellness – find friendship and support in both their military and civilian lives, feel a sense of belonging, and cultivate respect for others
Social wellness is defined as the relationships we have and how we interact with others. The relationships that we have can provide support when times are hard and nurturance when we feel overwhelmed. In addition, Social wellness involves fostering a genuine connection with those around you. Part of the difficulties we have are due to our sense of isolation from self and others. Social wellness is a process to correct this and provide a path for us all to follow. Let’s see how this can affect how we cope with Medical Illnesses.
The world of medicine has many specialties; each one focuses in on a different system in our bodies and that which can go wrong to prevent our being healthy. One such specialty is Psychiatry. Here we study the interplays between biology, environments and life experiences. Science has provided us with biochemistry, neurophysiology, pharmacology and a whole new set of treatments ranging from Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation to combinations of old medications with new uses when combined with new medications. In short, we can now approach illnesses such as Depression, Anxiety, and other potentially illnesses that keep us from living fruitful lives.
Despite all the new developments we tend to avoid a key factor. That factor is one that is our control and one that does not need a prior authorization or a cost-benefit analysis. This element is Social Wellness. SW allows us to care about ourselves and our relationships as well as caring for the greater good of society including the environment as well as our living communities. SW recognizes that we as citizens of the planet must actively take care of how we all interact and live together as well as allowing mankind to survive and prosper ecologically as well as economically.
When we treat those who suffer from mental illnesses we have to utilize skills that involves openly communicating needs, feelings, and thoughts. These same skills can be used to help us all to engage in good relationships with others as well as building healthy work and personal ties with those whose paths we cross. In short, we must work at being successful interacting in our world and not waiting for something to happen to make our lives better.
The Optimum Performance Institute offers 7 Ways to Successfully Cultivate Wellness for Life.
1. Practice Self-Care. – If we care for ourselves and our personal needs, we are in a better position to deal with life obstacles. Develop good coping skill which can include hobbies, sports, or social interactions with friends.
2. Know Thyself. – Learn how to communicate your personal needs and values to others. This can help you engage in relationships with those of similar values and interests.
3. Don’t Criticize, Judge or Blame. – Avoid criticizing others or yourself. This process can perpetuate low self-esteem and entry into negative relationships.
4. Own Up to Your Part. -When dealing with others in both negative and positive interactions take responsibility for yourself and avoid resentments and conflict.
5. Rekindle old friendships and nurture relationships with people who are respectful, positive and supportive – Keep track of old good relationships and re-engage with them. Support from others helps when things get bad. Maintaining old and current relationships that are positive assists in dealing with difficulty situations.
6. Don’t be a flake! – Be consistent with others. Keep appointments and don’t over commit yourself.
7. Appreciate Yourself and Others – Conserve your energy and time. Try to devote yourself to rewarding and pleasurable projects as well as with those who return your trust and kindnesses.
When seeking out care for your mental health difficulties remember it is about you and your life and you must take an active part in the process. If a person actively cultivates a sense of social wellness mental health and social success are easier to attain. Treatment of psychiatric difficulties involves a team and together it can be a successful experience.
We look forward to continuing to serve SW Florida in a compassionate and technologically sound manner.
About Dr. Robert Pollack
Robert W. Pollack, M.D. CEO is a Florida-licensed Board-Certified Psychiatrist. He has been in practice since 1977 and has served the public in many capacities. The American Psychiatric Association Board of Trustees, January 1, 2015, has granted him Life Fellow status.
At PASWFL, appointments are scheduled quickly, within one week of your call. For more information on SPRAVATO™ please visit his website at paswfl.com, or for more details about the office, call 239-332-4700.
6804 Porto Fino Cir #1, Fort Myers, FL 33912