Mental health

Mental Health includes our emotional and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. From childhood and adolescence through adulthood, mental health is important at every stage of life.1  

Mental illnesses are conditions that affect a person’s thinking, feeling, mood or behavior, such as:

There is no single cause for mental illness. A number of factors can increase your risk for mental illness, such as:

  • Trauma or a history of abuse
  • Experience related to other ongoing medical conditions like cancer or diabetes
  • Natural factors, like genes or chemical imbalance in the brain
  • Use of alcohol
  • Use of recreational drugs
  • Having feelings of loneliness or isolation2

Each illness has its own symptoms. Common signs of mental illness in adults and adolescents can include:

  • Excessive worrying or fear
  • Feeling excessively sad or low
  • Confused thinking
  • Problems concentrating and learning
  • Extreme mood changes, including uncontrollable “highs” or feelings of joy
  • Prolonged or strong feelings of irritability or anger
  • Avoiding friends and social activities
  • Inability to carry out daily activities
  • Difficulty handling daily problems and stress
  • Changes in sleeping habits
  • Feeling tired and low energy
  • An intense fear of weight gain
  • Concern with appearance
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Changes in sex drive
  • Hard time understanding or relating to other people
  • Inability to see changes in one’s own feelings, behavior or personality
  • Abuse of substances like alcohol or drugs
  • Multiple complaints without clear causes (such as headaches, stomach aches, vague and ongoing “aches and pains”)
  • Thinking about suicide or taking your own life
  • Delusions or hallucinations, when a person experiences and senses things that don’t exist in objective reality3

Suicide is when people direct violence on themselves with the intent to end their lives. Suicide does not discriminate. People of all genders, ages, and ethnicities can be at risk.

To seek help, visit:

For more information on who is at risk, warning signs, and additional information please visit National Institute of Mental Health

Stress is a normal physical and mental response to life experiences. Everyone expresses stress from time to time. Stress is different for everyone.5

Preventing and managing chronic stress can lower your risk for:

  • Heart disease
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Depression

You can prevent or reduce stress by:

  • Planning ahead
  • Deciding which tasks need to be done first
  • Preparing for stressful events

To learn more on how to better manage your stress, visit 4

Take a quiz to better understand your stress 4

UPHP is here to support members and their families in creating and forming healthy habits for a lifetime. It takes courage to talk to a family member or friend about a drinking problem. Please use the below resources to help you.

UPHP provides outpatient mental health care visits. You do not need a referral from a provider for mental health care. You may call a mental health provider listed on the UPHP Provider Directory. Out-of-network mental health providers require prior authorization from UPHP. We do not cover inpatient mental health or substance use disorder care. 

Mental health care not provided by UPHP is given by your local community mental health agency. Your local community mental health agency is NorthCare Network. To contact them, call:

  • For mental health services: 1-888-906-9060
  • For substance abuse services: 1-800-305-6564

For more information or questions regarding your benefit, please call UPHP Customer Service at 1-800-835-2556 (TTY: 711).

  1. Center for Disease Control and Prevention; January 26, 2018. Mental Health. Retrieved from
  2. Center for Disease Control and Prevention; January 26, 2018. Mental Health Learn about Mental Health, What Causes Mental Illness? Retrieved from
  3. National Alliance on Mental Illness (n.d) Retrieved February 5, 2019, from
  4. Mental Health America (n.d), Stress Screener. Retrieved February 12, 2019, from
  5. The American Institute of Stress(n.d), How Stress Affects Your Body, Retrieved February 12, 2019, from

Page Last Updated: 06/14/2019