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Mental illness facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

A mental illness is an illness of the mind. People with a mental illness may behave in strange ways or have strange thoughts in their view or the view of others.

Mental illnesses develop during the life of a person. This may be linked to genes and/or experience. What is considered as a mental illness has changed over time. What is considered to be a mental illness may not be one in a different culture. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) by the American Psychiatric Association is used around the world.

People with a mental illness sometimes have problems dealing with other people, or leading what is called a normal life. Treatment and certain medications can help people with certain mental illnesses lead a better life.

In some cases, mental illnesses change the way the brain works. Many conditions which affect the brain are not mental illnesses, as they do not change the way in which people think: Neither epilepsy nor Parkinson's disease is a mental illness, yet both affect the brain.

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Trastorno mental para niños

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