The number of people struggling with mental health issues has been on the rise ever since the pandemic started. Lack of social interaction has caused us to develop different types of depression - the most common of psychological disorders, but unfortunately, not the only one. Issues of mental nature are rarely discussed due to a fear of being misunderstood, rejected even. Sadly, the lack of awareness towards the subject has caused the public to develop a certain stigma around it. There are a variety of mental health myths circulating out there, mental health myths you should not believe - six of which we are just about to be busted!
The Most Common Mental Health Myths You Should Not Believe
Mental disorders are no joke. The consequences caused by them can, quite literally, be disastrous, fatal even. The thing is, recognizing problems of psychological nature can be tough, not only for the person experiencing them but also for their loved ones. In order to be able to identify the issue, one must become aware of what constitutes a mental disorder. And the first step towards raising awareness is busting the myths that have, for so long, been confusing the public.
#1 Mental Illnesses Cannot Be Cured
The exact cause of mental conditions can't always be pinpointed. Scientists do agree on the fact, though, that susceptibility to certain illnesses can be passed down from one generation to the next. In most cases, however, people develop such disorders in life rather than being born with them.
Despite us not knowing the cause of such illnesses, recovery is something that isn't all that far-fetched. Milder psychological disorders, for instance, can be fully resolved. As far as more serious conditions are concerned, we cannot talk about the complete "cure". We can say, though, that their symptoms are, in most cases, manageable. That means that a return to a normal lifestyle is possible for a majority of people with mental health conditions. With time, their condition will improve as long as they follow through with proper treatment.
Believe it or not, exercise plays a significant role in mental health recuperation. Research has shown that regular exercise actually helps people feel good mentally and thus, promotes faster recovery. The importance of physical activity has been recognized by psychiatrists as well, many of which often turn to prescribing it to their patients.
#2 Only Adults Deal With Psychological Issues
Another one of the mental health myths you should not believe is that children cannot develop disorders. The truth is, anyone can suffer from a mental condition. The age of an individual has absolutely nothing to do with the state of their mind. Actually, reports have shown that it is more common for disorders to present themselves early on in life. Most frequently, during the pubescent period.
Puberty, in and of itself, is a tough period for every child due to hormonal changes that occur in the body. The hormones can sometimes negatively impact the mind and lead to a variety of mental problems. Unfortunately, these do tend to go unnoticed for quite some time.
#3 Mental Disorders Aren’t a Typical Occurrence
An outright lie! They are much more common than one might think! Before the pandemic, it has been estimated that 1 in 4 people suffered from a mental disorder of some kind. COVID-19 has managed to further exacerbate the problem.
#4 Mental Illness Is a Sign of Weakness
Actually, the complete opposite is true. Somebody who has a mental illness is not weak but incredibly strong. Strong because they are trying their best to cope, despite the burden of their condition. People that have never experienced what it means to battle a psychological issue, like depression, cannot begin to fathom how hard it is to go about your day while having something that's constantly bothering you. They cannot possibly understand how hard it is to wake up each morning feeling down, trying to hide your inner thoughts from the rest of the world. It takes an extreme amount of willpower to do all of that - something that a weak person would definitely not be able to gather.
#5 Only Women Are Susceptible to Developing Eating Disorders
The media has made it appear as if it's only women that are at risk of developing eating disorders. This is, however, nothing but another one of the mental health myths you should not believe! Sure, women might be more prone to suffering from anorexia, bulimia, binge eating, and similar, due to the media's obsession with body image. But men are not spared, either! Studies show that 15% of anorexia patients are precisely males. If we are talking about overeating, the percentiles are even higher, with 25% of all cases of this disorder being associated with men.
#6 Loved Ones Are of No Help to Mental Patients
The power of love shouldn't be neglected! Earlier, we mentioned that exercise can aid mental health recovery. It's similar with love, or actually, with loved ones willing to help. But how can they be of assistance? Well, by being able to recognize the symptoms of psychological issues. Be wary of the following symptoms: