MYTHS vs. FACTS
The lack of information, or even spread of disinformation, about mental health problems in our country and many others can create a bias for inaction or denial of behavioral disorders. This unfortunate circumstance denies or severely delays the opportunity for compassionate, expert and effective care. Hamilton Center and Hamilton Center Foundation believe in a different mode of thinking – one based on honest facts and caring actions.
A few facts are a good start. Here, we present some common myths – followed by the facts.
Mental health issues do not affect me.
Mental health is something that could very well affect you or your loved one.
This year, one in five adults will experience a mental health issue.
An estimated 13-20 percent of children experience a mental health issue.
Whether you or a loved one suffers from a mental health issue, it is something that affects everyone who is part of the greater community.
Children do not experience mental health issues.
Half of the people who suffer from a mental health disorder began showing signs before the age of 14. Some of the most common mental health disorders among children include ADHD, anxiety and depression.
I can’t help a person with a mental disorder.
Many people who suffer from a mental health disorder are heavily influenced by the people around them. Some of the ways you can help someone with a mental health disorder include:
Letting that individual know that you are available to help or listen.
Offering to help them research and get access to treatment.
Treating that person with love and respect.
Refusing to define that person by their diagnosis and using labels such as “crazy.”
Having mental illness means that a person is simply overwhelmed by life.
A person’s personality or characteristics do not define their mental health. When a person finds the right treatment for their mental health issue, they can live normal, complete and full lives.
People who have a mental illness will never get better.
Using the right combination of treatment, a person can overcome their mental illness. Not everyone will have to seek treatment for their entire life.
People with mental disorders are dangerous or violent.
Most people with mental health disorders are not violent, but rather are the ones that are bullied by others.
Wellness: The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
Just as it is important to go to doctor appointments to make sure that we are physically healthy, it is important to make sure that we are mentally healthy as well. Just as you could get a cast for a broken arm, you need to seek treatment for mental health issues.
Thank you for reading. If you or your group would like to learn more or attend a presentation focused on creating greater community-wide understanding of behavioral health, check our Events page on this site or contact us via the information below.
The National Wellness Institute has given wellness six dimensions including:
- Occupational: one’s satisfaction with their work life.
- Physical: one’s need for physical activity.
- Spiritual: one’s search for meaning and purpose for existence.
- Emotional: one’s awareness and acceptance of their own feelings.
- Social: one’s contribution to the environment and community.
- Intellectual: one’s creative and stimulating mental activities.