Mental Health Issues: How We Can Advocate For Mental Illness Awareness

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Not so long ago, a woman who had overcome a mental health crisis wrote a letter to a younger version of herself, detailing the challenges she would face.

“Your grades will go down. You’re actually going on academic probation, ”Daisy Martinez wrote on social media. “You will get very depressed and start using drugs. You will make several suicide attempts, but this [lead you] receive help.

Mental health advocates hope more people will follow his example by speaking openly about mental health issues.

For this reason, they are promoting Mental Illness Awareness Week (SMIAM), which will run for a week starting October 3. This year, the focus will be on the importance of advocating for better care for people with severe mental illness (SMI).

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The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the authoritative guide to the diagnosis of mental disorders, defines an IMS as “a mental, behavioral or emotional disorder resulting in severe functional impairment, which interferes or significantly limits one or more major activities of the human body. life. . “

Schizophrenia is considered a serious mental illness, along with bipolar disorder, major depression, and other disorders that lead to severe functional impairment.

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Experts estimate that about five percent of adults in the United States suffer from serious mental illness. This number is roughly the same in Canada, where one in five Canadians suffers from a mental illness or addiction in any given year.

The vast majority of people with serious mental illness have a poor quality of life. For example, while 80 percent of them want to work, only 10 to 30 percent of them have a job.

Forms of advocacy

There are many ways to become a lawyer.

If you’re struggling with a mental illness, you don’t have to talk about it on social media like Martinez did. You could make a difference by sharing your story with just one family member, friend or neighbor.

You can also support someone in need of help, volunteer with a mental health organization, encourage local politicians to prioritize mental health care, or just speak out when you hear someone speak. mental illness in a way that fosters its stigma.

You could also organize or participate in a mental health and serious mental illness awareness event. This year, for example, you could participate in a virtual awareness walk and other events organized by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Champlain East. Visit his Facebook page at CMHAEast.

A mini getaway package and a gift card to be won thanks to the Best Western Parkway Inn & Conference Center and YourTV Cornwall.

For more details, call or email Angele D’Alessio at 613-551-9253 or [email protected]

Perhaps the biggest step you can take to help promote understanding of mental illness is to keep the words of former US President Bill Clinton in mind.

In a speech in 1999, he said: “Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but stigma and prejudice make us all ashamed. “

The information provided does not replace professional advice. If you need advice, please consult a qualified healthcare practitioner. For more information or if you would like to access our services at CMHA, please call 1-800-493-8271 or visit our website at www.cmha-east.on.ca.


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