A global day for education around mental health, 10 October is an initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health. Their goal is to raise public awareness of mental health issues around the world.
Australia’s campaign for World Mental Health Day challenges perceptions about mental illness and encourages everyone to look at mental health in a more positive light. The theme ‘Do You See What I See?’ urges people to look beyond the stigma and makes mental health more visible.
One of the biggest obstacles for people recovering from mental illness is confronting the negative attitudes of other people. These often mean that people with mental illness face isolation and discrimination just for having an illness.
Positive and hopeful attitudes of family, friends, service providers, employers, and other members of the community toward people with mental illness are critical to ensuring quality of life for people with mental illness and supporting recovery.
The reality is the vast majority of people affected by mental illness are able to lead independent and contributing lives in the community, with the right treatment and support. With one in five Australians affected, they form part of our close circles of family, friends and colleagues, and interact with us in our communities every day.
What else can be done about the stigma of mental health?
* Think about mental illnesses like any other illness or health condition and bring them into the open.
* Talk about mental illness openly with everyone you meet – it is surprising how many people are affected by mental illness, particularly the highly prevalent disorders of depression and anxiety.
* Educate the community to overcome negative stereotypes based on misconceptions.
* Promote mental health and healthy attitudes through childhood and adult life.
* Support the development of resilience: learn ways to deal with stress in relationships, situations, and events.
* Assist friends and family with a mental illness to obtain care and treatment as early as possible.
* Ensure high quality support and treatment services are provided to people with mental illness to promote recovery.
* Actively support the families and carers of people who have mental illness, who also experience the confusion, distress, and stigma that can accompany mental illness.
* Address discrimination in every area of life, including employment, education, and the provision of goods, services, and facilities.
* Encourage research into mental illness to assist understanding of how these illnesses affect people and can be prevented and/or effectively treated.
Click here for more info: https://1010.org.au/