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World Mental Health Day – Are You Mentally Aware?

1 in 5 Australians are affected by mental illness, yet many don’t seek help because of stigma.

These Australian’s form part of our close circles of family, friends and colleagues, and interact with us in our communities every day.

 This month on 10 October it was World Mental Health Day. This is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy. It is an initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health to raise public awareness of mental health issues worldwide.


What is the stigma around mental health?

Generally, the stigma around mental illness is due to people misunderstanding or prejudice. This can delay or prevent people from seeking help as they do not feel comfortable, which impacts adversely on their lives.

There are many misconceptions and misrepresentations about people who experience mental illness from the media, the arts and conversations we engage in at school, work and home.  A common thought that it is damaging to people’s lives and/or people affected are perceived as scary, comical, incompetent, weak or even hopeless due to their mental health.

In reality, with the right treatment and support, the vast majority of people affected by mental illness are able to lead independent and contributing lives in the community.


How can I shed a more positive light on Mental illness?

– Disconnect to reconnect: What are your tech habits? Do they prevent you from engaging and tuning in to those around you?

– Live in the present: Are you stuck in the past or worrying about the future? Reduce stress by looking at what is in front of you.

– Stay Active: Increase your wellbeing and decrease your stress levels with exercise.

– Get an early night: Are you getting enough sleep? Good sleep hygiene can impact both body and mind.

– Keep learning: Reading or learning a new skill can be great for confidence and keeping your mind active.

– Get to know the neighbours: Reduce isolation and grow your support network by getting to know those around you.

– Eat well: Are you eating healthily? Add healthy alternatives to your diet, limit caffeine and alcohol.

– Get outdoors: Do you spend much time outside in the fresh air? Nature can improve mental wellbeing.

– Be Kind: Boost your happiness by being kind to those around you.

– Seek help: The first step is to take action and start speaking to friends, family or your GP.



Mental Health Australia



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