Stamping out stigma- mental health misconceptions
Mental illness is a sign of weakness.
People with depression, anxiety, or other mental health situation aren’t “mentally weak.” Mental power is not the same as mental health. Someone who is blind or who has an ulcer could still be physically strong – and someone with depression or who is battling addiction is often being emotionally very strong just to have survived what they have lived through. You don’t get mental illness through weakness any more than you break a bone through carelessness or have asthma because you a lazy.
People with mental illness are violent.
It seems that mental illness is only ever actually newsworthy because of a violent incident – but most people with mental health problems aren’t violent. About 7.5% of crimes are directly connected to symptoms of mental illness. Alcohol, substance abuse, poverty, unemployment, and homelessness are more common cause for people to commit violent acts.
You’re either mentally ill or mentally healthy.
Just as a physically healthy person can experience minor health problems, any mentally healthy person will always experience an emotional problem or two in their lifetime. Mental health is a continuum and even if you are doing well, there’s a good opportunity you aren’t 100% mentally healthy. About 17% of adults are in a state of optimal mental health at any one time.
Mental health problems are forever.
Not all mental health problems are curable. Schizophrenia, for example, doesn’t go away. However, most mental health problems are treatable. Between 70 and 90% of individuals experience indication relief with a combination of medication and therapy – and whole recovery from mental health issues is not only possible, it’s very likely with many situations.
You can’t prevent mental health problems.
You can’t stop all mental health problems – big factors like genetics and traumatic life events play a role. However, every person can take steps to get better their mental health. Healthy habits — like eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of sleep, and participating in regular exercise — go a long way to improving how you feel.