Types of Mental Illness PDF

Click here to discover more about the different types of mental health disorders and how this PDF can support you in your mental health clinic.

By Chloe Smith on Apr 11, 2024.

Fact Checked by Ericka Pingol.

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What is mental illness?

A mental illness is considered a health condition that involves changes in emotion, thinking, or behavior, as guided by the American Psychiatric Association and Parekh (2018). Mental illnesses are often associated with distress and/or problems functioning within the individual's social, work, or family activities. They often result in other difficulties the individual may encounter and have an impact on their future if left untreated. Mental illness refers to all the diagnosable mental disorders. (American Psychiatric Association & Parekh, 2018).

There are some common mental illnesses that include anxiety disorders, mood disorders, psychotic disorders, and eating disorders. This is an incredibly large list that goes on. Each type of mental illness has it's own set of symptoms and diagnostic criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition (DSM-5).

It's important to remember that mental health exists on a spectrum. Those who experience mental illnesses can face the challenges and symptoms on a different level from their close family members or friends. However, if you notice significant changes or that it is starting to impact you or others persistently, mental health professionals can support you.

Printable Types of Mental Illness PDF

Download this Types of Mental Illness PDF to help understand different mental disorders.

What are the symptoms of mental illness?

Different mental disorders have differing symptoms. It's important to take into account life aspects such as culture, family situations, and personal traits when considering mental health symptoms. Here are a range of symptoms that you can look out for when contemplating your mental health provided by Health Direct (2019):

  • Having unusual or illogical thoughts
  • Having unreasonable anger or irritability
  • Having poor concentration or memory
  • Being able to hear voices that no one else can hear
  • An increase or decrease in sleep
  • An increase/decrease in appetite, or preoccupation with food
  • Having a lack of motivation
  • Being isolated or withdrawing from social contact
  • Using drugs
  • Feelings of suicide or self-harm
  • Being obsessed with a topic such as death or religion
  • Not looking after personal hygiene
  • Not doing usual activities
  • Not doing well at school or work

It's important to remember that a lot of these symptoms can overlap. It might not be that an individual has Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) if they aren't socially engaging. These symptoms typically need to cause distress to other activities and disregulate the individual.

What causes mental disorders?

There is still a large talk among researchers to decipher what actually causes mental disorders. Typical understanding of mental disorders includes the risk being heightened due to factors inside and outside of the self. These can include; social stressors, bullying, financial issues, relationship issues, personality factors, drug and alcohol use, genetic factors, and environmental issues.

Mental disorders can also be determined by how the individual's brain functions (Health Direct, 2019). Factors of life such as your culture, environment, and family situation can impact brain functioning and can have an impact on life situations, which, in turn, can have consequences for the development of mental health disorders.

Types of mental illness

There are many different types of mental illness. Each mental health disorder has it's own set of symptoms that can impact an individual. Although, it's important to remember that symptoms can cross over and make it difficult to differentiate between the disorders.

Here are the types of mental illnesses that individuals may suffer from according to Health Direct (2019):

  • Mood disorders
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Personality disorders
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Traumatic-related disorders
  • Substance abuse disorders

Although there are may other mental health disorder categories that individuals might suffer from, these categories encompass the common mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, anorexia nervosa, and bipolar disorder.

Types of Mental Illness PDF example (sample)

We've gone ahead and created a Mental Illness PDF that you can reference during your working hours. You can utilize this within sessions or as a resource for writing up assessment notes. However you choose to use this resource, you can easily download it from the link below or from the Carepatron templates page.

Download this free Types of Mental Illness PDF example here 

Types of Mental Illness PDF example (sample)

What are the treatments for mental disorders?

There are many treatments for mental disorders. Treatment will often depend on what works best for both the mental health professional and the client. Here are a range of treatments that are typically available for those struggling with any mental illnesses:


Individuals living with mental health concerns may be advised to take medication for their disorders. Medication can help individuals function normally and take some stress off their life. It's important to remember that psychiatric medications do not cure mental disorders.

However, they can often improve the effectiveness of other psychological treatments. Medications may include antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, mood-stabilizing medications, and anti-psychotic medications (Mayo Clinic, 2019).

Both the client and mental health professionals will work together to decide on medication effectiveness on a case-by-case basis.


Individuals who find themselves struggling with their mental health may often be referred from their initial point of contact to a psychologist who can administer psychotherapy. During psychotherapy sessions, clients and mental health professionals often spend a significant portion of the time conversing about the mental health problem as well as active ways to combat the symptoms.

This may include talking about writing in a self-care journal when feeling anxious to identify triggers. Each session may have a directed focus depending on the type of psychotherapy utilized.

Hospital treatment

If an individual is experiencing a severe mental health disorder such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, hospital treatment may be advised.

However, this only typically happens when the mental disorder is difficult to control, and the individual may become violent towards themselves or others. Putting themselves or others in harm's way is something that can be avoided by utilizing hospital treatment plans.

During this time, hospital staff work with the individual to create a safe and caring space for them to open up in.

Why use Carepatron as your mental health software?

Carepatron is just the place for all your mental health software needs.

Here at Carepatron, we have a focus on simplifying life for all healthcare professionals, especially those who work in the psychological field. With over 100 psychological resources available for use on our platform, you can rest assured knowing you're obtaining only the best and most trustworthy information to utilize in your practice.

We're not only dedicated to supporting you on the front line. Carepatron has a range of various tools that set us aside from any other ordinary healthcare OS system that allows you to step into your clinic with no fears of how everything is running behind the scenes.

When you choose Carepatron, you can access therapy practice management software that supports you and your co-workers. You can look forward to our ability to set patient reminders with our patient appointment tool, the ease of our clinical note system with our clinical documentation feature that allows you access from home or the office, and the bills with our medical billing software. With Carepatron, don't worry about setting time aside to complete those pesky administrative tasks. We've got you covered.

What are you waiting for? Sign up today!

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American Psychiatric Association, & Parekh, R. (2018). What Is Mental Illness? Psychiatry.org. https://psychiatry.org/patients-families/what-is-mental-illness

Health Direct. (2019). Mental illness. Healthdirect.gov.au; Healthdirect Australia. https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/mental-illness

Mayo Clinic. (2019, June 8). Mental Illness - Diagnosis and Treatment - Mayo Clinic. Mayoclinic.org; Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/mental-illness/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20374974

Who is at risk for mental disorders?
Who is at risk for mental disorders?

Commonly asked questions

Who is at risk for mental disorders?

Certain factors may increase an individual's risk of developing a mental illness. A family history, substance use, and even stressful life situations can heighten an individual's risk of mental disorders.

Can mental illness be prevented?

There is no sure way to 100% prevent a mental illness from developing. However, there are steps towards putting psychological well-being first. You can engage in tasks that boost self-esteem, soothe stress, and control any stressors.

What are some complications of mental illness?

There are many complications of mental illness that individuals can endure if their mental health is constantly declining. Issues such as family conflicts, decreased happiness, relationship difficulties, social isolation, suicidal ideation, and even self-harm.

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