_1 in 4 people, like me, have a Mental Health problem. Many more have a problem with that._.jpg

1 in 5 Americans and Canadians will experience mental illness.  How there is such a pervasive stigma out there regarding all mental illness with that stat, I do not know or comprehend.

Here are some more facts taken from National Alliance on mental illness NAMI

  • Approximately 1 in 25 adults in the U.S. experience a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities.
  • 1.1% of adults in the U.S. live with schizophrenia.
  • 2.6% of adults in the U.S. live with bipolar disorder.
  • 6.9% of adults in the U.S.—16 million—had at least one major depressive episode in the past year.6
  • 18.1% of adults in the U.S. experienced an anxiety disorder such as posttraumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and specific phobias.

Here is what they list for the consequences of lack of treatment:

  • Serious mental illness costs America $193.2 billion in lost earnings per year.15
  • Mood disorders, including major depression, dysthymic disorder and bipolar disorder, are the third most common cause of hospitalization in the U.S. for both youth and adults aged 18–44.16
  • Individuals living with serious mental illness face an increased risk of having chronic medical conditions.17 Adults in the U.S. living with serious mental illness die on average 25 years earlier than others, largely due to treatable medical conditions.18
  • Over one-third (37%) of students with a mental health condition age 14­–21 and older who are served by special education drop out—the highest dropout rate of any disability group.19
  • Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S.,20 the 3rd leading cause of death for people aged 10–2421 and the 2nd leading cause of death for people aged 15–24.22
  • More than 90% of children who die by suicide have a mental health condition.23
  • Each day an estimated 18-22 veterans die by suicide.24

– See more at: https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-By-the-Numbers#sthash.UcP9RvIB.dpuf

Something to consider. I know when you have mental illness society tells you, you are weak. And that you should feel shame. Well, #GetLoud. There should be no shame in mental illness. It is a disease like any other that needs to be treated and managed.
My brother had schizophrenia. He has passed so he isn’t with us anymore. But I remember times when we were talking and he would be talking about his delusions and I would be listening. And people around us would give him looks and back away. Or avoid looking at him. Subtly try to point him out to friends. He made people nervous and even afraid. Without understanding, if he was on no medications He was afraid and nothing to be afraid of. On medication he still was somewhat delusion, still had his views of the world and that is enough to seriously disturb people. I think it disturbs people there is a condition that could make reality something different to you than what is perceived so they shun those that are like that. I like to think he didn’t notice. But I noticed.
We know what people are like.
We know what people think of mental illness.  And therefore many people hesitate to see their doctor because of the stigma and shame of it… believing they should have to handle it themselves. People shouldn’t wait. Waiting can be a mistake.

2 thoughts on “Mental Illness Awareness Week #GetLoud

  1. Raising awareness, talking about mental health more to create a sense of openness and freedom, and breaking the barriers of misconceptions and stigma are all so incredibly important. Great post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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