Mental Health? Does it exist?

By Madeeha Khan

Mental Health, a topic so important yet the most unspoken. A concept only spoken about most after a heart-breaking incident. The essence of which should be taught at a primary level to build a person’s foundation yet we fail to do so until someone we know has gone through its ill-effects. Mental illness is what alters the way a person thinks, feels, behaves or interacts with those around.

Too many speculations arise as to ‘How can one face depression?’ ‘Is it just a trend?’

Only a few of us know that everyone has some risk of developing a mental health disorder, no matter their age, sex, income or ethnicity. According to WHO ‘7.5% of India’s 135-crore population suffers from Mental Health Issues’.

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Many people have mental health concerns but it becomes a mental illness when ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect your ability to function. It makes you miserable and can cause problems in your daily activities; like at school, work or in a relationship. In most cases, symptoms can be managed with a combination of medication and psychotherapy.

Sometimes people want to reach out but fear the reaction of the society, ‘What they may think?’ ‘Will I be considered as a mad person?’, hence they don’t speak up or ask for help. Barkha Dutt tweeted the importance about mental health stating, “I did not know Sushant Singh but I do know that one of the deepest reasons for depression is choking on your own emotion and putting up a brave front.”

The stereotype expects the men of the society to be strong, not share their problems with the world and are asked to ‘man-up’ if they do so. The portrayal of people in society based on their gender have added to this problem.

It’s important to talk, communicate and express. There are a lot of people in the world who would want to listen to you without any hesitation like your family, friends or close ones. It’s okay to cry out loud about the things that haunt or burden you. There is nothing wrong in consulting a psychiatrist who’d be happy to help you. If you are unable to speak about things, right it down but get it out of your system.

These solutions will only help, if you want to help yourself. Ending your life should neither be an option nor a solution. We need to face the dark within and find that light at the end of the tunnel. Calling a person coward when they commit suicide is shameful & disrespectful when they were just vulnerable or weak and could’ve survived if we as a society would’ve helped. Be kind and help those around you before it’s too late.

Image Credits: hbr.org

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