A person who is going through mental health issues has to face a lot of discrimination from our Indian society. As discussed in my previous article, talking about mental health is a taboo. Both children and adults, who have mental health issues have to face these stigmas. Stigma causes the person to be ashamed of something which is not in his/her control. The good news is that a person who is going through a mental illness can be cured if given the right help.
Steps to reduce Stigma:
Educate yourself :
It is very important for everyone to be aware about the causes of mental illnesses and one has to be ready to help a person who is suffering from a mental illness. A person who has a mental illness also needs to know and accept that he/she needs help.
Mental illness is not a disability or an infectious disease :
A person who is going through a mental illness is very often isolated from others. People have to understand that it is not a transferable or an infectious disease. A person who has mental illness needs a lot of of emotional support from his family and friends. Rather than isolating people, one has to make efforts to include and make them feel comfortable and be compassionate towards them.
Seek Treatment :
One can be very reluctant to accept and get treatment. Sometimes the fear of being labelled as mental illness can become a very big barrier. Getting the right treatment at the right time can help to identify what's wrong and can also help in reducing symptoms which could interfere in one's personal and professional life.
Do not let Self Doubt and shame over power you:
Sometimes a person can misunderstand his condition and think that it's a sign of weakness. Its extremely important to educate oneself, seek help and connect with other people who might be going through the same issues. This can help in gaining the self confidence and self esteem.
Join a Support Group :
There are various groups which help in creating awareness about the Mental Health Issues for people who have an illness, their families and for the general public.
Include everyone :
It is against the law to discriminate anyone. Do not discriminate. Provide job opportunities for all.
Talk Openly about Mental Health Issues :
Being vocal and talking honestly about one's illness could help many other people.
Be careful of your words:
One has to be mindful and compassionate of the language he uses. It is not right to give labels to anyone like Psycho or an addict. Always call the person by his/her first name.
Get help at school:
If a child is facing mental health issues, seek help from his/her school. Approach the Principal and make him aware about the situation. There are psychologists at school who could help your child.If the school authorities are not aware about it, it could lead to discrimination and poor grades of your child.
Speak out against stigmas. One needs to talk openly about Mental Health issues. The more you speak and educate people, the better it is for the society. One has to take whatever small steps he can to educate the society about the mental health issues. One small step could go a long way in helping those who are suffering from mental health issues.
This is my third post of Blogchatter's cause a chatter