This article is written by Priya Sharma, student at IMS Unison University, Dehradun
Actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death has made people realize how mental health plays an important part in everyone’s life. As the topic trends on social media, it has kick-started a long due conversation on mental health. Apart from that According to a recent National Mental Health Survey, approximately 150 million people in India need care for their mental health condition. This is a serious issue to be talking about in today’s world because there are millions of people suffering from the same and they don’t have the appropriate platform to speak about this problem where people can understand them and encourage living life.
As times have changed, we have begun to consider mental health an issue that needs to be addressed, but that consideration comes from a very small portion of Indian society. According to the study conducted by the world health organization (WHO) around 200 million people in India may suffer from depression but this is just the data of people who have spoken about it. These numbers can be even more.
Mental health is about a person’s mental and emotional well- being. The good mental health of a person or to be mentally sound would mean that one possesses a balanced mind, confidence, and self-esteem. Mental illness is a serious problem that significantly affects a person’s various activities how he thinks, perceives, and reacts.
Many people have mental health concerns from time to time. But a mental health concern becomes a mental illness when ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect your ability to function.
People can suffer from much mental illnesses that vary in degrees and are:
- Common Mental Health illnesses include:
- Severe Mental Health illnesses include:
It’s time to take mental health problems from occurring. Science has come to a stage where we are starting to uncover what we can do to prevent, for whom and when.
All key messages for prevention of mental illness are:
- Increasing of social, professional, and political awareness of advancements and the importance of mental health prevention and promotion.
- Promotion of healthy lifestyles including nutrition and exercise.
- Encourage school-based interventions (targeting children, parents, and education professionals).
Prevention efforts can best address multiple cumulative risk factors at an early stage of development.
“Prevention in mental health aims to reduce the incidence, prevalence, and recurrence of mental health disorders and their associated disability. Preventive interventions are based on modifying risk exposure and strengthening the coping mechanisms of the individual.
Mental health in India is still a fairly new topic and the mental health myths and taboos attached to this subject are prevalent to this date. India is the world’s suicide capital with over 2.6 lakh cases of suicide in a year. Basically there are few factors that contribute to these reasons,
Ignorance: the foremost reason is awareness and knowledge. There are too many derogatory terms used carelessly to describe someone who is mentally suffering some problem and this stigma is coupled with ignorance and lack of awareness which discourages people who are suffering to speak and reach people out. Mental illness can be treated with the right kind of support which is the right kind of medication, getting good counseling, support, and love from the peer circle and family plays a crucial role. And the most important is to reach out and identify these problems at an early stage.
Mental illness in covid-19:
These are difficult times for all of us as we all hear about the spread of covid-19 all over the world. The most common emotion faced by all of us is fear which sometimes makes us anxious, panicky, and can even possibly make us think, say or do things that we might not consider appropriate under normal circumstances. It’s very necessary for all of us to mind our minds during covid-19.
Handling our emotional problems:
- At times of anxiety, try to distance the thoughts that are making you anxious. Try to calm and slow down your mind.
- Whenever feeling lonely or sad is quite common in mental illness. Stay connected with others. Communication can help connect with family and friends.
- When feeling angry and irritated, calming your mind by doing some activities which make you feel happy and comfortable because distracting yourself helps.
- Use to ways mentioned earlier to deal with these feelings. Sharing of positive stories and feelings.
Persons with mental illness:
Persons with mental illness may face newer challenges every day which sometimes makes them more nervous, uncomfortable, and restless, even they would have the same fears and stress as others but this may worsen their previous mental health condition more.
So, to avoid this situation in our surroundings or with our near and dears not much just we need to understand them and actually listen to them when they need us. We can contribute a little to these people who actually need our love and affection at times and all we can do is, provide them proper support when they need us, not just pretending to be with them but actually help them.
Recognize mental health problems in your near and dear ones:
Just as you can recognize your own mental health problems, be sensitive to such changes in your near and dear ones, which may include:
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Difficulty in sleeping and concentrating
- Worsening of health problems
- Increase use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs
- Excessive fears or worries, or extreme feeling of guilt.
- Extreme mood changes of highs and lows.
Be supportive of these people if any problem persists, please contact your doctor or mental health professional.
Reasons you shouldn’t ignore your mental health:
- Mental illness is more than you think.
- Mental illness affects your physical health.
- Diseases and injuries can increase the risk more.
- Early detection can surely make a difference.
Mental illness is a part of physical health they’re not separate as our brain is part of our body. Mental illness can be the root cause of many physical symptoms. For example: if you’re suffering from a disease like insomnia, heart palpitations, or restlessness, your doctor in such circumstances will want to rule out depression, and other mental conditions as a potential cause. Depression is considered a risk factor for poor outcomes in patients with the acute coronary syndrome.
As the most medical conditions, early diagnosis usually leads to better outcomes. Getting the help you need soon can help you prevent the symptoms of mental illness from getting worse. Treatment can help you avoid the negative effects of symptoms that have on your life.
Helping a loved one:
If your deer ones show any sign of mental illness, have a open and honest discussion with them about their concerns. You may not offer professional care, but you can offer encouragement and support. You can help them find a good qualified mental health professional and make them feel comfortable in that situation. If your loved one or person you know has done self-harm or is considering doing so, take the person to the hospital or call for emergency help. Help and support is vital for persons with mental illness from their families and other care givers. Health help lines can provide support, in addition to regular taking of prescribed medication, a regular daily routine, keeping engaged and positive.
Remember, good mental status in the difficult times may win you the battle more easily!