The issues and topics surrounding mental health have always been poorly understood, even to this day. When it comes to mental health issues and illnesses, many people often regard them as taboo subjects. Some people find it disturbing or embarrassing to talk about their own mental health issues or to talk about the topic in general. In addition, the lack of knowledge and awareness has left many people unaware of the real issues underlying mental health.
Moreover, the media has also played a big role in spreading these wild myths and misconceptions surrounding mental illness. Sometimes movies and TV shows exaggerate their stories about people with mental illnesses and often portray them as crazy, dangerous and ‘out of control’. Thus, people with mental disorders would choose to hide their condition and not pursue any professional treatment for fear of being judged or ridiculed.
6 biggest misconceptions about mental disorders
Although recently there have been advances in attitude towards mental health, there are still many misconceptions that many people believe and are falsely propagated. While these misunderstandings may seem harmless, they can still be confusing and can be a major barrier to people seeking the treatment and support they need.
Therefore, it is imperative that you know what these common misconceptions are, correct them, and help break the stigma. Not only can you help encourage these people to get the support and help they need, but it can also be helpful for yourself.
To learn more, here are the six biggest misconceptions about mental disorders:
All people with mental disorders are crazy
The most common and common first misconception about mental health is that people with mental disorders are crazy. Some of the famous terms associated with mental illnesses can include “crazy”, “crazy” and “paranoid”. All of these words can be hurtful and deeply demoralizing for people with mental health problems. In fact, these are even strong enough to discourage people from coming forward and getting help.
If you noticed, famous depressed people would never even talk about their mental health issues for fear of being labeled crazy and insane. This misconception of tricking the public into thinking that all people with mental disorders are crazy will only ignite more stereotypes about mental health issues.
To dispel this misconception, you must first understand that not all people with mental disorders are crazy. They may experience symptoms of mood swings or delusions, but these will never drive a person crazy. However, heavy symptoms, like extreme hallucinations and uncontrollable emotions, are only present in particular mental disorders.
Mental disorders are very rare
Mental health disorders are ubiquitous than most of you realize. Mental health issues can seem extremely rare because very few people talk about it or talk about it frankly in the first place. Another reason is that some people with mental disorders don’t know they have it due to lack of knowledge about the subject or its symptoms.
When a person feels depressed, that person or their family and friends often view it as a normal feeling of sadness. As a result, the depressed person may not get the help and psychological treatment they need. Worse yet, they may or may not begin to isolate themselves.
Mental disorders only happen to adults
Another big misconception is that mental health problems can only happen to adults. However, according to research, children and adolescents are more likely to suffer from mental health problems than adults due to several factors, such as child abuse, peer pressure, parental stress, pressure from school and exposure increased to social media or news. In addition, many children and adolescents with mental health problems are often left without treatment and support due to lack of access to medicines or treatment, or simply due to a lack of awareness.
Come to think of it, when some adults have symptoms of a mental disorder, they can get the treatment they need with or without someone’s help. During this time, children and young teens may not seek medical help unless they tell their parents. Unfortunately, some parents are also not sufficiently informed or aware of mental health issues and would advise their children to overcome them. This in itself can make mental disorders worse in children. So, as parents, it is their responsibility to recognize mental health crises, especially with their own children.
Mental disorders make people violent and dangerous
The belief that people with mental disorders are violent and dangerous is a big myth. Fortunately, this massive misconception is slowly fading as more and more people become aware of existing mental health issues.
However, in the days when people ignored the different types of mental health problems and their severity, people with mental disorders were often viewed as violent and a threat to the safety of society. Worse yet, the media has often portrayed this big misconception in movies or TV shows, which has caught the attention of mental health advocates.
But the truth is, having a mental disorder doesn’t make a person violent and dangerous, even if they have the most serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia. And, more importantly, remember that people with mental disorders are often the victims of abuse, neglect and violence, rather than being the offenders.
People with mental health problems are unable to function and work
Another old but still common misconception is that a person with mental health problems is unable to work. While some mental illnesses can make a person disabled or paralyzed, it is totally wrong to claim that not all people with mental health problems can be productive members of society.
Many people with mental health problems can still have jobs, raise their own families, complete their education and get through their days with ease, just like people without mental health problems.
Mental disorders are permanent
Contrary to this huge misconception, mental disorder is not a life sentence. People with mental disorders are treatable. Although some mental health problems are chronic, treatments are available that can even help patients better manage symptoms and control their conditions. During this time, other mental disorders are short-lived, which means they may go away over time.
However, keep in mind that recovery may mean differently for each person. Some may view recovery as being able to go back to what they were feeling exactly before the onset of the mental disorder. For others, recovery may mean being free from symptoms and living a fulfilling life again.
Recovering from a mental disorder is not an overnight thing. It can take a long time and you may even experience setbacks. But, always remember that even though it took a long time for you to make a full recovery, positive changes will always happen for you along the way.
Everyone must work together to eliminate the biggest misconceptions surrounding mental health and mental health disorders. The best way to start your journey toward eliminating the stigma associated with mental health issues is to stay up to date and aware of the importance of mental health.
Interesting Related Article: “Why Businesses Should Promote the Importance of Mental Health”