Mental Health Hospitals

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Mental health hospitals today are a far cry from the primitive, cruel and barbaric places they were in days of old.

Unfortunately though, people are still afraid of mental hospitals or psychiatric hospitals and there is still a great deal of stigma attached to them mainly due to ignorance and a lack of education about mental illness in general.

Are there different kinds of mental health hospitals?

Yes there are. Some Psychiatric hospitals do specialise in the treatment of people with very serious mental illness and people who are admitted to these secure psychiatric hospitals are usually there on a long term basis. This is actually quite rare in comparison to the number of people suffering from a mental health problem.

There are other mental health hospitals that admit mental health patients for short stays in order to receive appropriate treatment or may even treat them on an outpatient basis. You can also find mental health hospitals or units that specialise in particular disorders or specialist treatment approaches. Sometime there will be mental health wards or units within mainstream hospitals.

The point is there is no single definition of a mental health hospital that suits all types of institutions where people with mental health problems receive treatment.

It’s important to note that for most people with mental health problems, the only treatment required will be administered by their doctor and perhaps other members of a mental health team. Relatively few people require a stay in hospital and even when they do; it is to help them get well again and will not last for any longer than is necessary.

Can I be admitted to a mental health hospital against my will?

The law is there to protect everyone, including those with mental health problems so there can be occasions when a person suffering from a mental illness is detained forcibly under the mental health Act in order to protect the individual or those around them.

This is usually a last resort and only in cases where there is significant danger to life or health. There are also strict rules governing the procedure for admitting someone under the mental health act so it isn’t a decision that is taken lightly.

The stay will only last as long as is necessary for the treatment of the individual and until the risk has passed.

Some people admit themselves to a mental health hospital on a voluntary basis in order to receive the help, support and treatment they need to be able to continue with their lives again.

For many of these people the hospital represents a safe haven where they know they can get the right sort of assistance to get them back in control of their lives again.

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