In the past few years, there have been many new "health regimes" floating around to help us put our focus on the health and wellness of our bodies. We see these fads everywhere. Stomach wraps, workout routines, diets, etc. We put all of this time, money, and effort into the health and wellness of our bodies, but have you ever stopped to think about the health and wellness of your mind?
Mental Health disorders and the importance of their effect are commonly minimized like crazy!
Let's just take a quick look at the numbers:
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. experience mental illness in any given year.
And 1 in 25 adults suffers from a severe mental illness, which can impact their lives and make their average day-to-day activities much more challenging.
About 1 in 5 youth will experience a severe mental illness at some point in their lives.
1.1% of adults suffer from schizophrenia.
2.6% of adults live with bipolar disorder.
16 million adults had at least one major depressive episode in the past year.
18.1% of adults experience an anxiety disorder such as post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and specific phobias.
That is A LOT of people, right?
I know a percentage as low as 1% or 2% can seem very small, but that is equal to millions of Americans!
But even with the millions of people who suffer and the efforts to normalize discussion on mental health, it's still seen as "abnormal" or minimized into something considered non-important.
But there can be SERIOUS consequences for ignoring the symptoms of mental illness in yourself and those around you.
Mood disorders, including depression and bipolar disorder, are the third most common cause of hospitalization in those aged 8–44.
Those suffering from serious mental illness are at a much higher risk of having chronic medical conditions and have been said to die, on average, 25 years earlier.
In the U.S., suicide is the 10th leading cause of death overall and the 2nd leading cause of death for people aged 10–34.
Over 90% of people who commit suicide show symptoms of a serious mental health condition.
Something that we MUST start doing as a society is working to normalize mental health discussion and talking openly about our own mental health, as well as being an open listener to others.
There are so many missed symptoms and opportunities for help due to the taboo nature of mental illness.
We as a united people can not push mental health to the wayside anymore.
Do whatever you need to do to receive the help you need and do all that you can to help others.
I, personally, hope that whenever I have children, the topic of mental health and illness is so normalized that my children can openly come to me and discuss their emotions and thoughts whenever they feel like they're having issues with their mental health.
If you or anyone you know needs help and is searching for someone to listen, the phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255