Friendship and Mental Health

September 8, 2017
By dylan_ BRONZE, Glendale, California
dylan_ BRONZE, Glendale, California
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Friendship and Mental Health

Many of us have at least one friend, and more often than not , we have many more. Have you ever felt more happy around friends? Or maybe you’ve felt more focused or even more daring? This might be caused by a of a release of hormones like dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, among others. These chemicals affect the brain, and they make you feel these feelings. Friends can also be a big help in other ways. What if being around friends was the easiest way to improve your mental health or state of mind?
Some studies, such as one by Dr. Sarah Rose Cavanagh about how friendship can alter feelings during times of stress, have talked about and proved this link. That release of hormones can improve your state of mind, but there are other ways. Most of us go to our friends when we’re sad to feel better, or we go to our friends for advice, and we even go to them because we’ve missed them and feel lonely without them. These interactions can greatly improve our mood, can help us think happier thoughts, and can rid us of stress and anxiety. Having friends during times of mental health issues or of mental stress is extremely important.
Ultimately, friendships are very important in many ways. Having friends truly does improve us as people. When we’re around friends we’re happier, less stressed, and more calm. Friendships are important to keep for other reasons. Friends are willing to help us up when we fall down, whether it be financially or emotionally, or they can provide to us if we need something to help ourselves, and they can even become our partners in life. In the end, if we didn’t have friends, we would a very different kind of society. We’d be a society full of more hatred and anger than we already have from terrorism, natural disasters, the impending doom of war, and more. Thankfully, we are not that society.

The author's comments:

I was inspired to do this piece because I lost a few friends when I chose to go to a different school for this year. I felt very sad for a few weeks because of this, so I decided to do research on how friendship can be connected to mental health. This piece was born from that research.

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