Recognizing World Mental Health Day

Look-For-Rainbows-The-Little-MarketHandwriting by Marisa Mangum

At The Little Market, a key part of our mission is to support individuals in marginalized communities and advocate for human rights. On this blog, Cultural Exchange, we strive to call attention to causes that are close to our hearts and to present avenues in which we can support one another. Today, we focus on World Mental Health Day.

Background

Since 1992, World Mental Health Day has been recognized annually on Oct. 10. It is a time to shed light on mental health issues and share ways in which we can support mental health care. The World Federation for Mental Health started World Mental Health Day as an initiative to raise awareness and support.

  • Approximately 1 in 5 adults within the United States (approximately 43.8 million) experience mental illness within a given year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
  • Approximately 21.4 percent of youth between the ages of 13 and 18 experiences a severe mental disorder at some point in life. For those between the ages of 8 and 15, this is 13 percent, according to NIMH.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports suicide as the 10th leading cause of death within the United States.
  • According to the World Health Organization, “One in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.”

2018 Theme

The theme for this year’s 2018 has been declared “Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World.” “Half of all mental illness begins by the age of 14, but most cases go undetected and untreated,” WHO reports. Youth and the beginning of adulthood are time periods that consists of much transition, and these experiences and situational factors can lead to vulnerability to mental illness and stress. WHO also notes that there is growth in the acknowledgment of how important mental resilience is and the efforts to help young individuals balance the changes and challenges that come with life. There are many ways we can support one another and take the right steps to prevent distress.

How We Can Help

  • Listen to one another. Talk through your emotions and be a support system. If your family or friends are experiencing stress, encourage them to communicate and seek help. Make sure they feel comfortable.
  • Recognize early signs of stress and mental illness.
  • Educate others on mental health and add your voice to the conversation in support of better mental health care.
  • Always show compassion and respect.
  • Help to remove any stigma surrounding mental illnesses.
  • Know that you are not alone. If you are ever in need of professional help, take care of yourself and seek the support you need and deserve.

Please join us in support of mental health and mental health care, today and every day.

Resources
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Crisis Text Line
Text HOME to 741741
National Alliance on Mental Illness Resources
800-950-NAMI (6264)

Sources
WHO – World Mental Health Day 
WHO – World Mental Health Day 2018
Mental Health – For Friends and Family Members
National Alliance on Mental Illness – Mental Illness 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Suicide Facts at a Glance 2015

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