Pets can help manage mental illness

Pets can help manage mental illness

Pets have been found to help aid in mental illness management based on research findings. Researchers from the U.K. surveyed over 50 adults with long-term mental illness to uncover the role which pets play.

The responses unveiled that 60 percent of respondents placed pets in the central and most important circle – above family, friends and hobbies. Twenty percent of respondents put pets as second.

For some, having a pet nearby offers an immediate sense of calm, and for others, pets help alleviate symptoms associated with mental disorders.

Study lead author Helen Brooks explained, “The people we spoke to through the course of this study felt their pet played a range of positive roles. They felt that their pets helped them manage stigma associated with their mental health by providing acceptance without judgment. Pets were also considered particularly useful during times of crisis. Pets provided a unique form of validation through unconditional support, which [the patients] were often not receiving from other family or social relationships.”

The study suggests that pets offer a great deal of support and can help manage mental disorders.


Author Bio

Mohan Garikiparithi got his degree in medicine from Osmania University (University of Health Sciences). He practiced clinical medicine for over a decade before he shifted his focus to the field of health communications. During his active practice he served as the head of the Dept. of Microbiology in a diagnostic centre in India. On a three-year communications program in Germany, Mohan developed a keen interest in German Medicine (Homoeopathy), and other alternative systems of medicine. He now advocates treating different medical conditions without the use of traditional drugs. An ardent squash player, Mohan believes in the importance of fitness and wellness.

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http://bmcpsychiatry.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12888-016-1111-3

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