World Mental Health Day 2020
World Mental Health Day 2020 is coming up! Some studies show that disorders like depression and anxiety are at an all-time high, fuelled by stressors related to family life, career, finances, and more. To spread awareness on mental health awareness, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recognises October 10th as World Mental Health Day. We must question this to ourselves why mental health disorders are so prominent around the globe, and how people with mental illnesses can improve their wellbeing.
Why is Mental Health Awareness Essential?
There’s ample research that illustrates the prominence of mental health issues today. Globally, millions of people are suffering from mental disorders, placing mental health issues among the leading causes of disability worldwide. But mental health is still widely stigmatised, and discrimination is still common practice towards people suffering from mental health conditions. Such negative perspectives on mental health keep many people from getting the treatment they need to recover and feel their best.
Coming out in open and admitting your flaws doesn’t make you less of a man, we must think that why mental health awareness is important is that it can reduce the number of people suffering in silence. In recent years, suicide was one of the leading causes of adult deaths in the World. By normalising mental health, people with mental health disorders realise that they aren’t alone. Having a mental health disorder can be extremely isolating, but talking about mental health creates an environment where people feel more comfortable discussing their own struggles.
Speaking openly about mental health can also help people suffering get appropriate treatment from a licensed mental health professional, which in turn reduces reliance on drugs and alcohol for coping. Openness around mental health awareness helps people with mental disorders find some support like resources, support groups, or activities to improve their well-being. Also, friends and family members of those with a mental illness can learn how to effectively help and support their loved ones.
Who is at Risk for Mental Health Disorders?
Regardless of age, gender, or socioeconomic status, everyone is at risk of developing a mental health illness. External factors do play a significant role in the development of mental health disorders, but it’s important for everyone to regularly check in with themselves, and determine how they are feeling and coping with certain situations. Supposedly if you’re experiencing low self-esteem, withdrawing from activities, feeling sad, or having excessive fears, it’s recommended seek treatment.
How to Improve Mental Health
Suffering from a mental health problem can feel like you’re stuck in a long tunnel, constantly searching to find the light at the end. But working on the betterment of your mental health doesn’t necessarily require expensive therapy sessions or prescription medications. There are many ways to improve mental wellbeing that are cost-effective and can be done on your own time, from the comfort of your home. Here are a few suggestions:
1. Talk to Someone
One of the most effective ways you can do for your mental health is to have an open conversation with someone you trust—that could be a psychologist or therapist, but it could also be a close friend, associate, or family member. Open up to them about how you’re feeling, what challenges you’re facing, and what’s going on that might be bringing you down. Often hearing your struggles out loud can be enough to relieve racing thoughts or uncertainty. Getting advice from others can give you a different perspective on the situation, and help you break through a difficult situation.
2. Exercise Regularly
Working on your body every day is a great way to keep your mind sharp, healthy, and happy. If someone is suffering from a mental health disorder, exercising for a short period each day is a great way to feel better. Exercise helps in many ways, like when you exercise the body releases feel-good endorphins that can significantly reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. One must develop an exercise program that fits into your schedule and makes you excited to work out. That might be a short swim in the summer, having an early morning Jog, attending a dance class, or doing yoga.
3. Focus on Self-Care
Mental health conditions can be triggered by career tensions, family problems, or other obligations. We all have to perform our respective responsibilities, but that you must not forget to make yourself a priority. Every day, do something that makes you happy and relaxed, that is away from all other distractions. Maybe that means treating yourself to a movie, getting regular massages, or cooking your favourite meal at home. Find ways to give yourself some positive things to look forward to each day.
Spreading Awareness of Mental Health
As we recognise World Mental Health Day on October 10th, it’s important to remember that mental health issues are common, and most people will experience mental health challenges at some point during their lives. The world is losing too many people to suicide every year, as a result of unresolved mental health issues. Remember that mental health is important for everyone and not only for people of a certain economic status, gender, or age. People should be having open and honest conversations about the state of mental health around the world, and treatment options that are available.
World Health Day in the Times of Coronavirus
This year’s World Mental Health Day, on 10 October, comes at a time when our daily lives have changed drastically as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. The past months have brought many challenges: for health-care workers, providing care in difficult circumstances, going to work fearful of bringing Coronavirus home with them; for students, resolving to take classes from home, with little contact with any teachers and friends whatsoever, and anxious about their future; for workers whose livelihoods are endangered; for the vast number of people caught in poverty or in super packer urban neighbourhoods with extremely limited protection from Coronavirus; and for people with mental health conditions, many experiencing even greater social isolation than before. Having said that there is one thing which is above all i.e. managing the grief of losing a loved one, often without being able to say goodbye.
The economic consequences of the pandemic are already being felt around the globe, as companies have to let staff go in an effort to save their businesses, or shut down completely. It is expected that the need for mental health and psychosocial support will substantially increase in the coming months and years as more people get anxious to get back to a normal way of living.
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