Mental illness includes a range of specific conditions that cause serious disturbance in thoughts, feelings and perceptions severe enough to affect you or a loved one's day-to-day life. There are many different types of mental illness; each has its own specific pattern of symptoms.
Some common mental illnesses are schizophrenia, depression, bi-polar disorder and anxiety disorders. Symptoms of mental illness often occur in cycles. An episode can last from weeks to months with times when no symptoms are evident. With children, these changes may be even more frequent. People will also differ in how severe their symptoms are. Mental illness, especially if left untreated, will affect their - or their loved one’s - quality of life. It will also affect the people around them.