Relationships Among Mental Health, Self Assessment and Physical Health

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Updated: Aug 18, 2023
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People with mental or physical disabilities seem to always be overlooked by society. Authors Hannah Tough, Johannes Siegrist, and Christine Fekete wrote “Social relationships, mental health and wellbeing in physical disability: a systematic review,” published in 2017 in BMC Public Health. They state that one of the major negative impacts on mental health is poor social relationships. The authors began by giving a detailed background on the personal facts about the article. They have figures, tables, and charts to support their research.

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In the article, the authors first state that it’s important to consider the subjective areas affecting a disabled person’s everyday life when assessing their wellbeing. It’s common knowledge that our world often places someone with a disability at the bottom of the stack, even though it can be proven that people with disabilities can accomplish tasks just as well as other people. There’s a link between mental health and social relationships in “normal” people’s lives. Traditionally, mental health is labelled as a complex buildup of empirical knowledge in the field of research.

A relationship can determine a person’s self-assessment. When a person is diagnosed with a mental, physical, or facial handicap, it can take an emotional toll on them. They often feel like outsiders and work extra hard to fit into society. Building positive social relationships can boost their confidence. They might even strive harder to learn to walk if they had a few friends to take a walk with. Although the connection between disability and interpersonal relationships is a topic worth exploring in its own right, it also has significant implications for well-being and health. Numerous empirical studies across a variety of behavioral science and medical disciplines have demonstrated the importance of close interpersonal relationships for health and wellbeing. The negative portrayal of disability’s impact on interpersonal relationships fundamentally lies in the presumed inequality imposed on the relationship when one participant has a disability but others do not. This inequality and its reasoning are not always explicitly stated. Does it emerge from the (perceived) inability of people with disabilities to participate in activities that matter to some, most, or all friendships? Or does it result from the (perceived) need for technological or human assistance to manage typical life tasks? Does it stem from a belief that the person with a disability does not possess the social or psychological resources required to be a stimulating and rewarding friend? These points also apply to the relationship between disability and romantic and sexual intimacy. This romantic aspect can amplify the concerns of people already skeptical about the ability of persons with disabilities to contribute to thriving friendships. Many nondisabled people may doubt that people with disabilities can be fulfilling partners in any loving adult relationship.

On the first table, they showed an overview of the social relationship, mental health, wellbeing, and participant characteristics. The table included a total of sixty-three studies. The titles included regions, designs, concepts of social relationships, mental health, wellbeing, and quality rating. The authors discussed how different characteristics can divide physical disabilities. About ten studies showed composite health scores. The most prolifically studied condition was rheumatoid arthritis. Tables two and three showed a summary of the cross-sectional results for the five constructs characteristics, namely, social support, social networks, negative social interactions, family functioning, and relationship quality. The other forty-four studies showed support for social and satisfaction definition terms. Another study proved that depression can be diagnosed within the first year of negativity from a social network. Disability creates numerous challenges in forging intimate physical and emotional relationships. People with sensory-motor impairments who were disabled beginning in early life often report being socially segregated from other children, either directly because they were tracked into different classes or schools, or indirectly because other students avoided them.

In the conclusion of the article, the authors state that people with mental health issues and wellbeing concerns rely on the important roles they play. This goes to show that just because I look different, doesn’t mean my love is different. Social isolation has long been known as a key trigger for mental illness, while supportive relationships with friends, family, and neighbors are beneficial to the mental health of individuals and the population. Other forms of social interaction, such as volunteering, are also known to boost wellbeing.

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Relationships among Mental Health, self assessment and Physical Health. (2022, Nov 17). Retrieved from