Overcoming the Stigma of Mental Illness Issues in Raleigh with Increased Awareness
Updated: Mar 5
For centuries, mental illness issues were something nobody wanted to talk about. There has always been a reluctance for families, individuals and communities to address the issue of how to deal with someone struggling with mental health problems due to the long history of societal shaming and fear of those deemed mentally unbalanced. More people today are finally overcoming the stigma of mental illness issues in Raleigh.
Increased community awareness about mental illness is imperative to initiate positive change, support and effective help for those caught in the grip of untreated mental and emotional disorders.
Mental Illness Issues Impact More People Than Most Believe
Mental illness issues affect upwards of 20 percent of the adult population. Today, mental health experts say that more than 47 percent of teenagers have some sort of underlying mental health disorder or emotional disturbance. Additionally, it is estimated that about 15 percent of children suffer from a mental health issue that often goes unnoticed until a crisis situation occurs that forces families, educators and society in general to confront these serious problems head on.
Understanding Societal Stigma Regarding Mental Illness
People tend to shy away from those who exhibit odd behaviors that they don't understand. They do this due to natural fears individuals have when faced with something that seems abnormal or scary. Others avoid socializing with people who don't behave in the manner that society has deemed acceptable. This has resulted in a long and sad history of societal stigma with regards to mental illness that continues to this modern day.
Why the Term "Stigma" Truly Says It All
Even though many people have heard about or used the phrase "stigma of mental illness," most do not know the historical significance of the Greek word "stigma" now used to describe those suffering with some sort of mental or emotional disorder.
In ancient Greece, a stigma was actually a negative brand that societal leaders used to mark community members who were deemed criminals or a slaves.
The negative connotations of this descriptive word can be difficult to overcome without professional and compassionate support and increased societal awareness according to mental health counselors and psychiatrists in the Raleigh, North Carolina region and elsewhere.
How Society Shuns, Shames & Ostracizes the Mentally Ill
Mental health professionals realize that society at large still shuns, shames and otherwise ostracizes those who happen to suffer from mental illness. This can be seen as children taunting someone who behaves in a matter different to their own.
Unfortunately, those prejudices against the mentally ill do not go away as people age. People tend to gossip, make fun of and even bully those suffering from mental illness issues or emotional disorders.
These underlying societal prejudices are seen in family units, friendship circles, inside church congregations, at school and on job sites and work environments of every description.
Can One Truly Overcome the Stigma of Mental Illness?
Though changes in societal norms and beliefs tend to occur slowly and not without a fight, there is hope that people today can really overcome the stigma of mental illness with the proper treatment, care and support.
Many with mental illnesses or an emotional disorder are finding help by getting effective and knowledgeable mental health treatment, counseling along with learning coping skills that really work.
The Importance of Building a Positive Support System
Everyone needs a shoulder to cry or lean on when going through tumultuous times. Sometimes, individuals do not currently have a reliable and supportive group to help them navigate life in a positive manner.
Mental health professionals recommend taking steps to build the sort of support system that will offer unconditional support during both bad times and good times. If is often necessary for people to look outside their families if there are toxic relationships involved. Today, people can find support groups for mental illness issues, domestic violence, drug and alcohol addiction recovery programs and personal or family counseling at a local mental health center or practice.
How Increased Community Awareness Improves Lives
When even just a few neighbors, church members or students commit to being supportive of someone undergoing mental illness problems, positive changes in our communities are possible and likely. Get help or learn more today by contacting us at MedPsych Integrated at 919-582-7272