The Do”s and Don”ts for Dealing with Mentally Ill Family Members

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Mental IllnessDon”t Threaten: A mentally ill person may interpret this as a power play and increase fear or prompt assaultive behavior.

Don”t Shout: If the mentally ill person seems not to be listening, it isn”t because he or she is hard of hearing. Other “voices”# may be interfering or predominating.

Don”t Criticize: It may only make matters worse; it can”t make things better.

Do Learn About Their Illness: Stay educated on the signs and symptoms of your family member”s illness and the things they may be experiencing.

Do Recognize Warning Signs: Take note of any change in sleeping or eating habits, social withdrawal, and signs of irritability.

Do Ask For Help When Needed: Don”t be afraid to seek help and advice from a qualified medical professional, physician, or advanced practice behavioral health nurse.

Remember: The future is unpredictable, so stay in a present mindset.Reduce expectations for a rapid recovery. Reduce pressure on the patient for performance. Modify overall expectations and strike a reasonable balance between realism and hope.

Tips from the National Alliance on Mental Illness Georgia

Local Crisis Stabilization Facilities

Summit Ridge Hospital
(678) 442-5800

Eastside Heritage Behavioral Health Center
(770) 985-6470

ViewPoint Health
(678) 209-2490



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