World Mental Health Day 2021
10 Oct 2021 | Anne Marie Fogarty
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Mental health has been defined as a state of well-being where people positively contribute to their communities, are relatively happy and can cope with whatever the world throws their way without stressing too much.
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social wellness. However, everyone experiences a unique mental health status as everyone is just that – unique.
We wanted to celebrate World Mental Health Day with all our team here at ProMedical – so, we got involved, sending out mental health information packs to our loyal hard-working ProMedical family. We also wanted to go one step further and get involved in the campaign. Today, we will be wearing our green ribbons proudly and as always, putting people before all else, starting open conversations and asking each other how you are-really are?
Let’s get a better understanding of what World Mental Health Day is all about and why it’s such a precious commodity that we need to invest in to reap the rewards.
What is mental health?
According to the World Health Organization, mental health comprises of various things. They include intergenerational dependence, perceived self-efficiency, subjective well-being, autonomy, and self-actualization of our emotional and intellectual potential. In simple terms, mental health affects how we make choices, relate to others, and handle stress. People who experience mental health issues have their mood, thinking, and behaviour affected. Several factors contribute to mental health issues, they include:
- Mental health issues within the family (Family history).
- Life experiences like abuse and trauma.
- Biological factors like brain chemistry and genetics.
Our mental health is so important for our well-being; it’s the engine that keeps us going. For this reason, the WFMH (World Federation for Mental Health) marks World Mental Health Day every 10th of October. The organization has settled on ‘Mental Health in an Unequal World’ as this year’s theme. Looking at everything going on around us, it’s indisputable that it deserves a standing ovation for choosing the theme. What most of us have been going through since the emergence of Covid-19 is something we cannot wish to happen to anyone in any given situation. Everyone is entitled to mental health support and care for all should emerge as a bold reality.
A significant percentage of the world has been affected mentally by the latest pandemic. According to WFMH, mental health service delivery has remained nothing but a pipe dream. Around 76%-94% of individuals with mental health disorders within the middle-income and low-income range cannot access mental health care services. According to the Office for National Statistics, at least one in five people in the U.K suffer from depression. These statistics are alarming! Mental health should be addressed as soon as possible.
Early Mental Health Warning Signs
Since Covid-19 was declared a pandemic, almost all of us have been mentally affected. People with a history of mental health conditions, those who live alone, health workers, students, and other frontline workers have been affected the most. Moreover, service delivery for those with substance use issues and neurological and mental disorders has hugely been affected by curfews imposed by governments worldwide.
Since mental health has persistently proved to be a universal issue that needs immediate addressing, let us look at some of its early warning signs. If you or anyone you know experiences the following signs, it may be time you consider professional help, including a positive support system.
Below are early mental health warning signs:
- Sleeping or eating too much or too little
- Having no or low energy
- Hopelessness and despondency
- Alienating yourself from other people
- Pulling away from your usual or daily activities
- Felling like nothing matters in the world
- Drinking, smoking, and unusual use of drugs and substance abuse
- Experiencing unexplained pains and aches
- Fighting and yelling with friends and family
- Severe mood swings that affect our relationships
- Feeling scared, worried, upset, angry, confused, forgetful, or on the edge
- Having persistent memories and thoughts you cannot get rid off
- Thinking about harming others or self-harm
- The inability of handling your daily business
Our mental health is not something to take for granted. We need to be vigilant and mindful of self-care and to keep a watchful eye on our loved ones.
The Importance of a Healthy Mind and How to Maintain it
When we are in a positive state of mind, we can conquer the world and achieve our dreams without getting bothered by minor setbacks. We can realize our full potential, be productive members of our society, cope with stress, and have meaningful relationships with others.
To maintain positive mental health, we should try to:
- be optimistic
- help others
- be physically active
- connect with others
- develop coping skills
- get enough sleep
- have a positive support system
- get professional help if need be.
For us to be at our best, we need to be in the right frame of mind. To learn more about mental health and other mental disorders, please visit MentalHealth.gov.
If you require help with your mental health, get in touch with the government health website, talk to a trusted friend or see your GP.