We do refer to this mental health barrier as a stigma. Stigma is when someone views the mental health patient in a pessimistic way because the person is having a distinguish personal traits. Sadly, these types of attitudes and beliefs are common in our society. This stigma or fear of stigma discourages someone from seeking help and treatment for their mental illness condition. This causes more delay in treating their mental problems which may cause significant problems.
Some harmful effects due to stigma are:
- Avoiding treatment for the mental health problem
- Physical violence or harassment
- Fewer opportunities for doing work.
- Lack of understanding with family and friends.
Here are some of the tips to break these barriers:
Understanding the Mental Health Conditions: In order to create a change in the society regarding the perspective of mental health. It is crucial to understand the problems and causes around the mental health care. Like physical health challenges. it is very important to understand the mental health challenges that are not visible but have high affect.
Seek treatment: The most important thing that one can do is to get treatment for their condition or they can encourage the people. Who are struggling with the problem. Treatment is important for reducing symptoms that interfere with work and one’s personal life.
Don’t let stigma create self-doubt: A person sometimes gets the feeling of stigma from not only others but also from himself. You may believe that the problem is because of your physical weakness. So, educating oneself about their problem and seeking counselling can help the person gain self-esteem.
Opportunities for better mental health care: There is more to mental health care than seeking help with mental illness. Routine mental health check-ups can reduce anxiety, improve moods, lead to clearer thinking, create a greater sense of calm or inner peace, increase self-esteem, reduce the risk of depression, and improve relationships.
Speak up against Stigma: Express your opinion against the stigma in a confident manner. Create awareness about the mental illness to others respectfully. Remind them when they are not making fun of heart patients. They shouldn’t make any fun of people who are suffering from mental illness. Speaking up not only helps in reducing stigma. But also gives courage to the people who are facing a similar challenge.
Resources for better mental health: Every person in every community can play a key role in raising awareness and ensuring that mental health patients know about what they are going through. Communities have this responsibility and make access to mental health resources for the patients. The community’s collective efforts are the only way to break down these barriers to secure a better future for every individual.