Shortly after we are past the month of May, the “green ribbon” is pushed into a drawer to be taken out next year. Has the month of Mental Health Awareness only become a trend as of late?
The month of May is observed as the month of Mental Health Awareness since 1949. Now, “what is mental health awareness?” you may ask. And to put it even simpler, it is to eliminate the stigma on mental health and help our peers out.
Need For Mental Health Awareness
It is easy to call out a person “crazy” when he has a bipolar disorder. But if you were to imagine that the average age when chronic mental health illnesses intervene is 14 years, would you still think the same?
New research shows that one in every five Americans falls victim to mental health every year. And an alarming percentage of these patients indulge in addictions and substance use.
Where are we headed if not for spreading awareness, locking up a quarter of the country’s population?
Mental health can catch up on anyone, and there rarely is an easy way out of it. Traumas, abuse, neglect, stress, depression, anxiety, and panic attacks are the leading causes of mental disability. Suppose we do not evolve to eradicate these from society right at the start. In that case, it is only going to grow exponentially. We have only seen a surge in mental health conditions that a month of lockdown results in.
The need for mental health awareness arises so that we can help ourselves and others around us. You’re as much likely to have a mental health condition as the person next to you. Therefore, educating the public about the severity and seriousness of the issue is spreading awareness.
Instead of stigmatizing it, patients will be able to receive early treatments for effective cures.
Mental Health Awareness In Children
Children, teens, and young adults are the most affected by mental health. One can never say what may cause trauma or depression in a child, but that doesn’t mean the problem doesn’t exist. Suicide rates are through the roof in children and young adults. And the only rational way to look at it is the lack of mental health awareness.
School curriculums should include spreading mental health awareness. So that children affected directly by mental health conditions can look after themselves better. And even so, if someone in the social circle, peers, or family is affected, they know the right ways to deal and cope.
Many people do not see a therapist’s office until it’s too late because they didn’t know what to do. Teaching children from an early age about its importance, especially in this fast-paced age, is a betterment. Subsequently, the children who grow into adults will be much informed and aware of the existential problem.
Mental Health Awareness In Adults
These past few months in lockdown call for a perfect time to spread mental health awareness, especially in adults. We already know how much trauma can haunt us in childhood. But according to recent studies, severe traumas are likely to strike back in mid-twenties and post-adolescence.
Usually, it is not just the trauma that reappears. It is the numerous stress factors that leave you at a vulnerable spot. Burnout, endless work hours, anxiety, professional competition, and overachieving are all that pave the way for mental illnesses.
Ironically, the workplace is a perfect place to start mental health awareness among adults. Employers should take the necessary steps to ensure they don’t demand too much from the team. Although the country has many laws for workplace protection, every state seems to differ on the standards.
Mental health conditions can cause a person to lose a job, relationship, and a sense of self-worth. And at such a decisive point in life, it takes a huge toll on your future self. The main idea of spreading MHA (Mental Health Awareness) is that we can help each other out as a community.
If you notice a colleague skipping out on meals, and just not being quite there, take the initiative to communicate. Nine out of ten times, the problem may not even be as severe. But if it is, you can then guide and help them out as you will.
Mental Health Awareness In Elderly
Old age mental health conditions are inseparable. There may be many ways to avoid such conditions in the first place, but we are aware of very few of them. So when it comes to the elderly, it’s all about the care and tending you can provide to them.
Death by suicide in the elderly is far higher than that of adults. This shows a trend of loneliness, helplessness, and isolation. Whether you have a loved one at your home or as a neighbor, taking time out to communicate, even a little, is going to help a long way.
The seeds of awareness do not thrive fast and well in the elderly, so it always comes down to awareness in adults and children. Because the children and adults are aware of the mental health conditions and its effects, they will take more wholehearted care of the elderly.
However, there are some steps we can take as a community to promote MHA. By starting regular sessions for the elderly of a compound or area about mental health awareness. And by guiding them about more herbal and natural ways to cope with the stress.
Diet And Mental Health
Your diet has a major say in your mental health. As the rule of thumb goes, the healthier you eat, the healthier you’ll feel.
It can be seen from several studies about how food items packing high on fats do affect your stress levels. Consuming high-sugar and high-fat food items will drain your energy out. However, moving towards “greener” products such as fruit and vegetables show a drop in stress levels.
Drinking as much water, not skipping out meals, and slow-digestive carbs make up for a perfect meal plan. Other than helping your physical health, these nutritional changes impact your mental well-being as well.
More than that, you can choose to include certain supplements or herbal remedies to your diet. Just like a glass of milk and seven almonds keep the brain sharp, a CBD vape pen will keep it relaxed and calm. But before you head out to get your hands on any food supplements, it is always advised to consult your doctor. Mostly, it won’t be a problem, but if it is, you’ll know what not to do.
Mental health is a growing concern worldwide, especially after seeing a glimpse of the days of lockdown. An increase in domestic violence, depression, anxiety, and undealt traumas indicates a poorly aware society.
The aspects I covered above are a long way from suggesting the perfect solution to the problem. But it does give you and others a direction to look for the answers in. Also, if you are suffering from any mental health condition or know someone, the best thing is to reach out to a therapist. The internet is a good place to find a direction for your thoughts but not to seek counseling.