Coping with Voices- Living wit...

Hello, I am Krishna, 29 years old. Am just on the way to the hospital for my regular check-up. I was diagnosed with schizophrenia a year back. My experience with schizophrenia a few months ago was terrible. Let me break down the synopsis of my story with schizophrenia.   The Butterfly Effects- That was a […]

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Things to Remember for a Succe...

Mainly, living life with schizophrenia means trying to sustain an indeterminate balance between the things the brain tells and the reality. Statistical data says 40% of the people live a balanced and a productive life with Schizophrenia. The illness may be periodic, with times of deterioration and improvement independent of hopes and actions. All you […]

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Does Drug Rehab Work?

There is a commotion that surrounds drug addiction or abuse of street drugs all across the globe. A common thinking came forward by some surveys that people think that drug addiction can only be cured by the willpower of the addicts, and only they themselves can easily cure their dependency. Also, many of them have […]

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How I lost my job?- Cadabams R...

What could be a bigger heartbreak than when you realise that “YOU ARE FIRED”. And it is because of your addiction. Hello, am Alex (name changed) a successful employee of a reputed company. I had won “The employee of the year” award for two consecutive years now. Like all individuals in this almost rounded globe […]

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Long Term Rehabilitation for D...

Addiction to being sober for long is not a cakewalk. It takes a lot of courage, determination and strength to achieve it. If you have been a drug or alcohol addict and you are over it now then thank and congratulate yourself because you deserve one. If you are not able to get over it […]

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Overall mental health and beating mental health stigma

Positive Step Towards Mental WellBeingStigma is a strong feeling of disapproval that people associate with a particular attribute, more so when it is unfair. People suffering from mental disorders need constant support and encouragement to speak their mind in order to cope with their condition.

Unfortunately, negative attitude towards mental health conditions like depression or bipolar disorder isn’t uncommon. There are many stereotypes associated with mental disorders, such as beliefs that the person may be unstable, crazy or even violent, which often lead to discrimination. However, such destructive myths can alienate a patient.

Some of the harmful effects of stigma against mental illnesses are –

  • One may avoid or stop seeking treatment
  • Lack of support and understanding from family, friends and others around, can lead to reduced self-confidence.
  • Lack of career and social engagement opportunities, prevents one from leading a balanced and productive life.
  • The person can be bullied or harassed by others discriminating against him.
  • Health insurance doesn’t adequately provide for treatment or therapies needed for mental illness.

Coping with stigma

  • Educate yourself – Most stigmas are a result of lack of awareness. Educate yourself, your family and friends about the mental illness, its symptoms, treatment options etc. Discuss with the family and friends to seek proper treatment.
  • Commit to treatment – Do not let the stigma of being labeled, prevent a patient from seeking help. Treatments like Psychotherapy, Meditation etc., can help in relieving symptoms that interferes with patient’s everyday life.
  • Care and Empathize – Do not equate a person with his mental illness. Avoid using negative words like crazy, lunatic etc., towards a person. Ensure the person is not isolated with everyone’s behavior. Showing love and care can encourage the patient to be more open to treatment and counseling.
  • Fight perception – We ought to look beyond the stereotypes used to describe people with mental illness and even encourage others to understand the condition and its symptoms to help people suffering from it.
  • Support – Family and peer support can greatly influence the patient’s condition. Families of a patient can align themselves with local or national support groups which offer local programs and resources to help reduce stigma by educating people with mental illness as well as others.

Better awareness and understanding, coupled with family and other support system can help overcome the stigma around mental illnesses.

 

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