All through Mental Health Awareness Month, Cantata Health Solutions has been sharing various mood-boosting and spirit-lifting activities that our team members engage in, hoping to inspire others to practice methods of self-care as well. Although this month is coming to an end, mental health matters all year round.
Many years ago, seeing a psychiatrist, or “shrink” as it was commonly and inappropriately referred to, was for the “unhealthy” and “mentally unstable.” It was looked down upon, and if you saw one, people deemed you “not well.” Luckily, that is not the case anymore. Mental health counseling is, generally, much more accepted, and can be effective in helping anyone struggling with life issues, big or small. It is always best to talk about and confront your emotions, rather than keep them bottled up.
Many triggers cause one to develop a mental illness. Some are genetic; some stem from environmental issues such as childhood trauma and stress at school or work; some are undetermined. Regardless, these illnesses are as real as diabetes, HIV/AIDS, heart disease, cancer, and other severe medical conditions, but unlike most medical conditions, often mental health issues are stigmatized. Some people may think these conditions are self-inflicted; some do not believe they are real. When people suffering from these conditions reach out for help, they may hear replies such as “man up” or “stop worrying about it,” as if it were that easy.