Today on the 10th of October 2014 it is world mental health day; I wanted to draw attention to this as I feel mental health is an issue that regularly goes unnoticed.
In the UK it is a fact that the most common cause of death for males is suicide. I believe the reason for this is because commonly mental health issues such as depression and anxiety are seen as a weakness. Around one in ten people suffer from anxiety and depression, both men and women.
“Depression is a flaw in chemistry not character”.
Physical health and mental health are both equally important as each other. Mental health issues can lead to death just as easily as cancer or heart disease and this is what people don’t seem to understand. Many people can be close minded about the subject of mental health and don’t see it anymore than “just a bit of worrying or sadness”. However it’s interesting how no one seems to tiptoe around the subject when we hear on the news that another celebrity has committed suicide.
Recently the actor Robin Williams committed suicide; comments flew around social media such as “such a waste talent” “what a shame”. But people don’t comment upon these issues or think about mental health until something tragic happens and someone loses their life. If it were talked about more, people wouldn’t be so ashamed to seek help.
Today I clicked on the hashtag #worldmentalhealthday and read some poignant articles about people who have been neglected from getting any health care as doctors have dismissed the problem. A majority of doctors do not have this view on mental health and take it very seriously but from what I have read it seems that children and teenagers suffering from the symptoms of mental health problems are just ignored. Surely there should be more concern for young people as by helping them now it could prevent it getting any worse as they grow up.
The whole point in today is raising awareness and showing people that if you are suffering to speak out and get help, and also for people witnessing someone who is struggling to encourage them to seek help. There are hundreds of services available for people talk about their mental health before it is too late.
Nick Clegg recently revealed that the NHS are to put mental health issues on the same footing as cancer and he has a £120 million pound plan to reform mental health services. It’s fantastic that political leaders are taking initiative to make progress.
After I spent a lot of last night reading about the different charities that help end the stigma towards mental health I was particularly intrigued by Time To Change. They launched in November 2007 and have made a huge impact as they have reached 47 million people in England and had a great impact on public knowledge, attitudes and behaviour.
Today it is brilliant to see mental health making headlines for the right reasons. I was surprised about the amount I learnt from a little research so I urge you to take five minutes and have a little look into the charities I link below and make a pledge on the Time To Change website to end discrimination towards mental health.