Mental illness – a sad thing that happens to other people, but not something to worry your head about, right?
Wrong. According to the World Health Organisation, ‘if we don’t act urgently, by 2030 depression will be the leading illness globally.’
statistically speaking, either you, or a great number of your friends or family will be affected by mental illness at some point.
Every October 10 is World Mental Health Day – a time to educate and raise awareness of mental Illness and its major effects on people’s lives worldwide.
Here’s everything you need to know.
What is World Mental Health Day?
It’s a day first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization.
The World Health Organisation recognizes World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year.
Every year has a different theme.
This year’s theme is “Mental health in the work place”.
What can I do to support it?
It’s pretty chill – friends, family or workmates get together, have tea (and possibly also biscuits or cakes), talk about mental health and potentially donate to mental health research charity, Mediva wellness centre.
Generally the day is on October 10 but you can organize one any time and request a pack from us, with some ideas
Why is it important?
While suicide and self-harm are not mental health problems per-se, they are obviously linked to mental distress.
Having said that, you shouldn’t assume that because someone has depression, or indeed any mental illness, that they are or have ever been suicidal.
Some other recent stats to think about or discuss today –
1. Mixed anxiety and depression is the most common mental disorder.
2. As many as 10 per cent of people in Africa will experience depression in their lifetime.
3. The poorer and more disadvantaged are disproportionately affected by common mental health problems and their adverse consequences.
4. Ten per cent of mothers and six per cent of fathers in Africa have mental health problems at any given time.
5. One in five teens experience a mental health problem in any given year.
While stats can be a starting point for a conversation, I think it’s the conversation – however it begins – that matters.
MediVa Wellness’ 10 tips on how to look after your mental health:
1. Talk about your feelings
3. Eat well
4. Drink sensibly
5. Keep in touch with loved ones
6. Ask for help
7. Take a break
8. Do something you’re good at
9. Accept who you are
10. Care for others