Today, Saturday 10th of October marks ‘World Mental Health Day,’ the international day dedicated to the mental health of everyone.
Today is all about awareness and education and a reminder as to why it is vital to break the stigma that comes with such a topic.
Mental health is always important but in a time like this, when the whole world is collectively struggling through a pandemic it is all the more crucial.
There has always been a stigma around mental health, and the reason for this stems from lack of awareness and lack of education. Because mental illness is often invisible to those around us unlike many physical illnesses, the stigma around mental health has always existed and still does to this day.
When a person does not have any personal experiences with this reality, it may be difficult for them to grasp the concept. And this is exactly why such a day needs to be celebrated and why advocacy is paramount.
This year’s Mental Health Day is dedicated to all those struggling with their mental health during this pandemic.
To those students who are going to school trying to adapt to the new normal while keeping up their grades. To anyone feeling constantly anxious when leaving the house, to those who are feeling alone and missing human contact. To all the frontliners who are working hard with such great responsibilities and to those with difficult living situations and uncertain futures: – You are not alone!
In Malta particularly, suicide rates have increased although they still remain lower than other European countries. It is important to note that more than half of these suicides are men. This comes to show the importance of empathy, understanding and the need for toxic masculinity to be eliminated altogether.
In a day and age when we are so open minded and accepting of new ideas, innovation and diversity, it surely wouldn’t hurt for everyone to be nice to each other.
It is important to remember that every individual is different and we all cope in our own ways. So don’t judge those around you, be kind, try to be empathic, speak sensibly and listen!
Some helpful links:
For those who need to talk: https://kellimni.com
Malta Support helpline: 179
For those who want to learn: https://www.mentalhealth.gov/what-to-look-for/anxiety-disorders