Understanding a Nervous Breakdown

Wyn Jugueta
October 28, 2022

It’s normal to feel overwhelmed or stressed out from time to time. But if these feelings last for weeks or longer and prevent you from functioning normally, you may be experiencing a nervous breakdown.

A nervous breakdown is not a diagnosable mental health condition but a real and serious problem. It’s often a reaction to overwhelming stress or a life-changing event. Symptoms can include anxiety, depression, crying, insomnia, irritability, and more.

This article will discuss everything you need to know about a nervous breakdown, its causes, and how to handle one if you’re experiencing it.

What Are The Symptoms of a Nervous Breakdown?

That being said, some general characteristics are usually associated with a nervous breakdown. These include:

  • Feeling overwhelmed or unable to cope with life’s stressors.
  • Experiencing a major change in mood, such as feeling sad, anxious, or hopeless.
  • Having difficulty performing everyday tasks, such as working or caring for the house.
  • Isolating yourself from friends and family.
  • Losing interest in activities you used to enjoy.
  • Suffering from physical symptoms, such as headaches or stomachaches.
  • Abusing drugs or alcohol.
  • Thinking about suicide or self-harm.

is nervous breakdown a symptom of mental health problems

What Triggers a Nervous Breakdown?

Nervous breakdowns are often brought on by overwhelming stress. This can be from a major life event, like the death of a loved one, divorce, or losing a job. It can also be caused by chronic stressors, like caring for an ill family member or working long hours.

Some people are more vulnerable to nervous breakdowns than others. This may be due to genetics, personality, or previous experiences with trauma or mental illness.

How Long Does It Last?

A nervous breakdown is not a diagnosable mental health condition, so there is no set length of time for it. However, most people start to feel better after a few weeks or months of rest and self-care.

You may need to see a mental health professional for treatment if your symptoms are severe. This can include therapy, medication, and hospitalization.

Is a Nervous Breakdown a Symptom of Mental Health Problems?

While doctors and mental health professionals may not agree on the term “nervous breakdown,” they would likely agree that it’s a problem that mental health problems can bring.

Mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression are common causes of nervous breakdowns. Other causes can include life-changing events such as the death of a loved one, a divorce, or losing a job.

Some people may be more likely to experience a nervous breakdown than others. This can include people with a family history of mental illness, who are going through a significant life change, or who are experiencing a lot of stress.

mental health crisis in young adults

How to Recover From a Nervous Breakdown?

If you or a loved one is in a situation where a nervous breakdown seems likely, it’s essential to get help. This can include talking to your doctor or mental health professional.

There are also some things you can do at home to help manage the symptoms of a nervous breakdown. These include:

Getting enough sleep

Sleep can be crucial for managing stress and anxiety. Be sure to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night.

Eating a healthy diet

A healthy diet can help improve your mood and give you the energy you need to cope with stress. Be sure to eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.


Exercise can help relieve stress and improve your mood. A moderate amount of exercise is key.

Avoiding drugs and alcohol

Drugs and alcohol can make your symptoms worse. If you’re struggling with addiction, get help from a treatment center.

Making time for yourself

It’s important to make time for activities you enjoy. This can help you relax and de-stress.

causes of mental breakdowns

Getting help from a mental health professional

You may need to see a mental health professional if your symptoms are severe. This can include a therapist, counselor, or psychiatrist. They can help you manage your symptoms and develop a treatment plan.

Calling a Mental Health Professional

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek help from a mental health professional. They can help you figure out if you’re experiencing a nervous breakdown and, if so, how to best deal with it.

What to Expect from a Mental Health Professional

When you call a mental health professional, they will likely ask you about your symptoms and how long you’ve been experiencing them. They may also ask about your medical history and any family history of mental illness.

They will then likely do a physical exam to rule out other possible causes of your symptoms. Once they’ve done that, they can provide you with a diagnosis and develop a treatment plan.

reasons for mental breakdowns

Are There Any Medications Used for It?

The treatment for a nervous breakdown will vary depending on the underlying cause. For example, if an anxiety disorder causes your nervous breakdown, your treatment may include medication and therapy.

If your nervous breakdown is caused by a major life event, such as the death of a loved one, therapy may be the best option. This can help you process your grief and make healthy coping choices.


No matter the underlying cause, it’s important to get treatment as soon as possible. The sooner you get treatment, the sooner you can start on the road to recovery. Call a mental health professional today if you or a loved one is experiencing a nervous breakdown. We at Roots TMS are here to help you through this difficult time. Call us to get started on the road to recovery.

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Wyn Jugueta