06 Mar Mental Health And The Stigma Behind It
Mental health issues are becoming increasingly rampant nowadays. People who are unaware of ongoing mental health issues often get surprised when everything is already too late. Many lives are damaged or even lost because of unaddressed mental health issues.
It is important to be sensitive and aware of the people around you. You might be surprised that a friend who is always smiling is keeping his or her struggles inside. The person you are used to seeing everyday may be battling something on his own.
Mental health always had a stigma behind it as it is often an issue that some people have a hard time grasping. Those who suffer from mental health problems say that people’s stigma towards them make it hard for them to live a normal life.
Mental Health Problems
Some people may be unaware of the different mental health problems that exist. People may be showing a happy image, but they may be suffering from mental health issues. Some of the most common mental health problems are:
- Panic attacks and anxiety – Anxiety is a normal feeling that all people experience. However, if one feels anxious all the time, it becomes a disorder and may often become panic attacks. People with extreme feeling of fear or worry make it difficult for them to have a normal social life.
- Depression – This disorder involves the feeling of sadness towards the things that one used to love and enjoy. This is a serious mental health issue as it negatively affects the person’s overall health.
- Eating disorders – Eating disorders, such as bulimia or anorexia, are mental health disorders that involve having aversion towards food as well as their body shape. If left untreated or unaddressed, people who suffer from it may result to excessive weight loss, dehydration and even death.
- Schizophrenia – This disorder involves the failure to comprehend what is real or not. Symptoms may include confused thinking, false beliefs, hearing non-existent voices, lack of motivation and little social engagement or emotional expression.
- Bipolar disorder – This mental health issue is diagnosed for a person who has experiences of having extreme bouts of low or depressed mood combined with high or manic moods. Multiple episodes of depression as well as strong mood swings are some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder.
There are still many mental health disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD, obsessive-compulsive disorder or OCD, psychosis and more. If left untreated, the person suffering from them may cause harm to himself or herself, as well as other people.
Mental Health And Death
Most mental health disorder sufferers die prematurely. According to Mental Health Reporting, those who are diagnosed with depression and related health issues die through suicide. 2% to 15% of people diagnosed with mental health disorders die by suicide.
Persons with depression have a high risk of committing suicide because of their extreme feeling of hopelessness. Those who suffer from these disorders also resort having substance abuse. In fact, 25% up to 50% of people who have substance abuse disorders die by suicide as well.
Mental health disorder sufferers find it hard to find work, socialize and establish relationships because of the stigma behind their condition. Sadly, people may not be aware that they are adding fuel to the fire by being insensitive.
Those who do not understand the condition ignore the fact that they are hurting such people. They view mental disorders as a way to be noticed and some even view it as a fake disease. These thoughts not only promote ignorance, but also aggravates the negative feelings that the patients experience.
If you noticed significant changes in the behavior of your friend, family member or loved one, try to intervene. Be a helping hand and tell them they are not alone. A change in behavior can mean many things, which is why it is important to let them know that you are there.
What Can You Do To Help?
It may not be much, but talking with those who suffer from mental issues can help a great deal. Giving them your empathy is enough to show them you care. VIC Park Psychology is also available to assist in any kind of way.