Recognize The Signs: Women’s Mental Health Symptoms

March 18, 2024|Mental Health|
A pensive women in a colorful room looks out a window.

Mental health is often overlooked, but it is just as important as physical health. Women, in particular, face a variety of stressors that can impact their mental well-being, such as societal expectations, hormonal changes and the pressure to balance work and family life. Women also face more barriers to proper diagnoses of mental health issues in relation to men. According to the National Library of Medicine, between 30-50% of women struggle getting properly diagnosed for depression, even when showing symptoms of major depressive order.

Ignoring mental health or misinterpreting the symptoms, can lead to serious mental and physical consequences. This is why it’s so important to stay educated on women and mental health issues, as well as partner with healthcare professionals that you can trust.

A Brief History of Gender Roles and Mental Health

The history of gender roles and mental health is a complex and multifaceted topic. Throughout history, societal expectations and gender norms have played a significant role in shaping the mental health experiences of women.

In the past, women were often expected to fulfill traditional gender roles, such as being homemakers and caregivers. These roles were often accompanied by limited opportunities for education, employment and personal autonomy.

Furthermore, women’s mental health issues were often stigmatized and misunderstood. Mental health issues were sometimes dismissed as “hysteria” or attributed to women’s supposed emotional fragility. This lack of understanding and support could prevent women from seeking help and receiving appropriate treatment.

Over time, societal attitudes towards gender roles and mental health have evolved. There has been a growing recognition of the importance of mental health for women and those who identify as women, and the need for gender-sensitive approaches to mental healthcare. Efforts have been made to challenge gender stereotypes, promote gender equality, and provide accessible mental health services for women and those who identify as women.

It is important to acknowledge the historical context and societal factors that have influenced women’s mental health. By understanding the past, we can better address the unique challenges that women face and work towards promoting mental well-being and gender equity for all.

Signs of Mental Illness in Women

Mental health issues can manifest in different ways, and it is essential to recognize the signs to take action. If left unchecked, these signs can cause increasing distress that can affect both your mental and physical health. 

Here are some common signs of mental health issues in women:

Changes in Mood and Behavior

One of the most common signs of mental health issues in women is changes in mood and behavior. This can include feelings of sadness, irritability, anger or anxiety. Women may also experience changes in behavior, such as withdrawing from social activities, changes in sleep patterns or changes in appetite.

Difficulty Coping with Stress

Women who are struggling with mental health issues may have difficulty coping with stress. They may feel overwhelmed, have trouble concentrating or experience physical symptoms such as headaches or stomach aches. Burnout might be recurrent for women who are struggling with underlying mental health issues.

Changes in Relationships

Mental health issues can also impact relationships. Women may have difficulty maintaining healthy relationships with friends, family or romantic partners. They may also experience conflicts or difficulties in communication. Mental health issues can also cause people to self-isolate, by ending relationships or staying at home for extended periods of time.

Physical Symptoms

Mental health issues can also manifest in physical symptoms. Women may experience headaches, stomach aches or other physical symptoms without a clear medical cause. Compulsive behavior, such as nail chewing, binge eating or self-medicating can also be physical markers of mental illness.

Promoting Mental Well-Being in Women

It is essential to recognize the signs of mental health issues in women and take steps to promote mental well-being. The first step of promoting mental well-being in women and those who identify as women is to understand the root causes of these issues, and place systems in place to deal with these symptoms when they arise. While you may not be able to get rid of stressors, you can create healthy coping mechanisms.

Practice Self-Care

Self-care is crucial for maintaining mental well-being. Women should prioritize taking care of themselves, whether it is through exercise, healthy eating or engaging in activities they enjoy. Self-care can also look like prioritizing rest and restorative activities.

Seek Support

Women should not be afraid to seek support when they are struggling with mental health issues. This can include talking to a trusted friend or family member, seeking therapy or joining a support group. Having a support system can provide a sense of comfort and help women cope with their mental health challenges.

Set Boundaries

Setting boundaries is essential for maintaining mental balance. Women should not feel guilty for saying no to things that may cause them stress or overwhelm. It is crucial to prioritize one’s mental well-being and set boundaries to protect it.

Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment and paying attention to one’s thoughts and feelings without judgment. It can help women manage stress and promote inner strength. Mindfulness techniques, such as meditation or deep breathing, can be incorporated into daily routines to promote mental well-being.

Help is as easy as a phone call. Hartgrove Behavioral Center offers several programs and resources to help you and your loved ones manage their mental health and live productive and fulfilling lives. Call today at 773-433-2900.If you or a loved one are experiencing an acute mental health crisis, call 988 or get to the nearest emergency room.


Hartgrove Hospital

Hartgrove Hospital is a Modern Behavioral Health Hospital that specializes in personalized treatment for adults, adolescents and children. We pride ourselves on delivering quality care provided by our compassionate and thoughtful staff. Our mission is to restore the emotional well-being of our patients, while giving them the proper resources for their future.

Some of our programs include our inpatient and outpatient services. As well as our trauma and Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). These programs are offered with an all-encompassing psychiatric healthcare service that is both effective and efficient. Located in Chicago, IL, our facility has a friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

To schedule a no-cost assessment or for more information, please call 773-572-7900 .

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