Column: Why Mental Health Matters Everyday
By Adam Humphreys
Mental Health Day may only happen one day a year, but it should matter everyday.
Last month saw us getting together in aid of Mental Health Day, the main objective being raising awareness of the issues surrounding mental health problems, including suicide. It is an annual event that takes place worldwide and is observed in Africa, the Americas, South East-Asia, Europe, Eastern Mediterranean, the Western Pacific and more. The day itself was organised by the World Health Organisation, W.H.O, and began back in 1992. One of the main ideas behind it was to reduce the social stigma around issues regarding mental health. Other policies that were put in place to educate people on the facts and raise awareness.
In 2019, a campaign was launched and backed by many celebrities including Nadiya Hussain, Professor Green, Gillian Anderson, Davina McCall, Katie Piper, Freddie Flintoff, Joe Suggs, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Glenn Close. The project, called ‘Every Mind Matters’, aims to show that mental health can affect all of us. It also touched on how understand it, help those with it and how to look after yourself. The key message is that no one is alone and that every single mind out there, including your own, does matter.
Every Mind Matters was created in partnership with the NHS. The program offers tips and advice covering various topics. For example, it recommends stopping smoking, dieting and exercise and how you can help others, and yourself.
As a society we need to explore the causes of mental health, from the smallest factors to the biggest. Many things can contribute to poor mental health, so we must work on how to deal with it and those who live with it.
This year Great British Bake-Off winner, Nadiya Hussain, opened up about her troubled childhood and how it contributed to her anxiety issues later on in adult life. She wasn’t the only one: many other celebrities came forward with their own experiences with mental health issues and anxiety. Some even revealed that they contemplated suicide at times.
If we are to take on the challenge of dealing with mental health issues, and the issues that accompany it, then we have got to come together. We need to support each other if we are going to change the mental health stigma. We must dismantle the negative social perceptions that plague it and the people affected by it.
Mental Health Day may only be for one day, but we need to be there for each other for every day of the year. #EveryMindMatters
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