5 Common Myths About Mental Illness Debunked
Mental illness affects everyone in some way, not just the patient. While we may know people who had a break at some point, we still see these people discriminated against. These are the most stereotyped people because of twisted realities. Here are some myths about these kinds of people:
Mental Illnesses Are Not Real Illnesses
This is a myth that can be very debilitating. A lot of people tend to dismiss mental illnesses as mere drama. Because of this mentality, people do not get the needed help.
Mental illness can be very harmful and will not go away on its own. They are real health problems with effective treatments that have been backed by research through the years. Take an injury, for example. When someone breaks a bone, you would not expect him or her to just grow it out. The immediate approach would be to get the injury casted and get help for recovery.
Children Do Not Experience Mental Health Problems
Even very young children can show early signs of mental health problems. These problems are often easy to spot and can be the result of the interaction of biological, social and psychological factors. Age does not protect a person from mental health issues and, in fact, children can be more prone to some of these.
Half of all mental illnesses can manifest even before a person reaches 14 years old. Three quarters of all recognized forms of mental health disorders can manifest before someone reaches 24. Sadly, most people undermine it and dismiss it when children get mental health illnesses and deprive them of the help that they can get. This can hamper a child’s development and could have permanent effects.
Mentally Ill People Are Violent and Unpredictable
People with mental health issues are stereotyped as those who have to be contained within a straightjacket. This, however, is not the case. The vast majority of people with mental health issues are actually no more likely to be more violent than anyone else. Statistics even show that only 3% to %5 of violent acts can be attributed to people with a serious mental illness.
People with severe mental illnesses are 10 times more likely than the average person to be victims of a violent crime. You might even know someone you meet on a daily basis with a mental health issue and not be aware of it. This is because many of them are high functioning and productive members of our communities with lives of their own, as well.
Mentally Ill People Lack Intelligence
Mentally ill persons have given you a good laugh at one point and several comedy shows have depicted these people as the dumb ones in the gang. In reality, intelligence does not really have anything to do with whatever mental condition a person can have. When counted as a whole, the level of intelligence amongst people with mental illnesses just parallels those with people who do not have any issues at all.
Depression is Part of Growing Up
While depression is the most common and most treatable mental illness, it is never an inevitable part of ageing. While many get depressed at some point, some people age without ever feeling depressed. Older people just happen to be more prone to depression because they experience constant change in roles and social circles. However, just like these older adults, anyone regardless of age can get depressed as well.
People with mental health problems are some of the most misunderstood, mainly because of the lack of understanding and awareness. Fortunately, we live in times when these issues are now more openly discussed, giving more people the opportunity to seek the help they really need.
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