Mourning and Mental Illness: Coping with Loss

The loss of a loved one is a stressful event and can cause a major emotional crisis. It is only natural to experience grief when a loved one dies. The best thing you can do is allow yourself to grieve.

After the death, many report feeling an initial stage of numbness, but there is no real order to the grieving process and you may experience a wide range of emotions including: denial, confusion, shock, sadness, guilt, or even anger. This can even be true when the death is expected. Remember, these feelings are all part of the bereavement process and are normal and common reactions to loss.

Those coping with loss may not be prepared for the intensity and duration of emotions or how swiftly moods may change. Some may even begin to question the stability of their mental health but be assured that these feelings are healthy and appropriate and help coming to terms with a loss. It takes time to fully absorb the impact of losing some one but coping with death is vital to a healthy mind, body, and spirit.

Coping with the heartbreaking loss of someone is a process and the length and extent of mourning will depend on the individual, the type of loss, and void left by that loss. When pain and sadness do not ease over time but instead worsen, grief can have a profound affect one’s physical and mental health. Chronic, prolonged grief can even lead to a complicated bereavement or grief disorder – the symptoms of which are extensive and can include intense focus on the loss, difficulty maintaining a daily routine, and withdrawal and detachment from friends and family.

Because of individual differences, diagnosis can be difficult. Those with a history of depression, anxiety, or substance abuse; or those who with a close, emotionally dependent relationship to the deceased are at an increased risk of developing a grief disorder. The mental health professionals at Behavioral Health Services of Arkansas can offer the help and support needed to work through complicated grief disorder symptoms. Call us today at 501-954-7470 or request an appointment online.

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10 Corporate Hill Drive, Suite 330
Little Rock, Arkansas 72205

PHONE: 501-954-7470
FAX: 501-954-7420

Monday-Thursday: 8 am to 6 pm
Friday: 8 am to 5 pm