Mental health awareness is one of the leading topics in social media and in the news. Long gone are the days of “If you don’t talk about it, it will go away.” Those not understanding that stigma is attached to mental illness want to know, “Why is mental health awareness important?” Education proves important for them and everyone. People need to open up about their own mental illness. As a result, mental health awareness becomes more accepted and understood. Change has been slow in coming. However, developments have been made in the mental health community to prove mental illness is a true medical illness.
What Is Mental Health Awareness?
Mental health awareness helps educate the public at large. It teaches them that it is okay to share experiences, vulnerabilities, and shared concerns about mental health issues. Reducing the stigma which has been attached to mental health will help countless others. Consequently, they will understand that mental illness can be treated. Awareness raises the number of people who get help. Anyone who deals with their own mental health problems benefits from awareness. This includes those suffering from depression, anxiety, PTSD, bipolar disorder, and more. Breaking the stigma will allow more people to reach out for help when they feel alone, isolated and desperate.
Why Mental Health Awareness Is Important
Conversations promoting mental health awareness are the foundation for leaving the stigma in the past. Educating yourself and others concerning the different aspects of mental health has many benefits. It keeps you on top of your own concerns. In addition, it reinforces support for friends, colleagues, and family who may be experiencing their own mental illness. Many people don’t know how to talk about it. Awareness raises their ability to open up and speak. Mental health awareness is important to help you understand your own symptoms. You learn that it’s okay to reach out for help. You can start by addressing your concerns with your physician. Sharing your experiences with others gives them the opportunity to offer their support. As well, they may speak up about their own issues. This allows you to provide support and encouragement to them. Awareness is definitely a two-way street.
What Mental Health Disorders Need More Awareness
All mental health disorders benefit from receiving awareness. However, some are less familiar than others. People still make jokes and take lightly the severity of these mental health disorders. This can cause damage to those who suffer. Joking about mental health carries on the old stigmas mental health awareness tries to dispel. Causing people to suffer in silence only carries on the negativity stigma pushes on people who are struggling. Some of the less understood mental illnesses include:
- Bipolar Disorder: formerly known as manic-depressive illness or manic depression, bipolar disorder has three different types. This disorder causes difficult shifts in mood, energy, concentration, and the disrupts the ability to take care of daily responsibilities
- Anxiety: Several types of anxiety disorders exist. They all begin with the same problem of having overwhelming fear and anxiety that rules your life. Anxiety is so extreme it affects work, relationships, school, and life in general. Panic disorder, phobias, and social phobias all belong to the family of anxiety disorders.
- Substance Use Disorder: These disorders indicate recurrent and abusive use of alcohol and drugs. People often use them to self-medicate symptoms of mental illness. In fact, about half of people who have a mental illness also deal with addiction to drugs or alcohol.
- Depression: This disorder is a mood disorder. Too often, people mistake it for being the blues or just a bad mood. The symptoms can become so extreme that they interfere with life and the ability to carry out regular responsibilities.
How Mental Health Awareness Can Break the Stigma
Breaking the stigma is why mental health awareness is important in today’s world. Knowing you are not alone when experiencing a mental illness is encouraging and leads to strength and commitment in getting treatment for relief of symptoms. Millions of people in the world are dealing with symptoms of a mental illness and having support is crucial in recovery. No longer are people hiding in the shadows, ashamed to speak out and say that they are overly anxious, depressed, or have phobias. People are not considered crazy, mental, or losing their minds when they break the stigma and speak out on mental health.
What To Do If You are Struggling with a Mental Health Disorder
If you struggle with a mental health disorder, it is important to recognize that mental health awareness is important. No need for shame and silence should happen when you need encouragement and support. Talk to your family and friends and share that you have some mental health concerns. Some mental illnesses exist alongside addiction. Called “co-occurring disorders”, professionals can treat them at the same time. While the idea of treatment may feel complicated, many options exist, along with people who can help you.
Mental Health Treatment in Los Angeles
At Launch Centers, here in the Los Angeles area, we understand why mental health awareness is important. We house an experienced staff who can help you if you are struggling with mental illness or substance use disorders. Our compassionate staff will help with your individual needs and answer your concerns with encouragement and support for what you are experiencing. Contact us now and get started on the path to healing.