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Mental Health

By Edited May 16, 2014 1 2

Mental health covers a wide range of information. It is defined in many ways and rouses many reactions in people.

For centuries the conditions classified today as conditions determining mental health held stigma that went as deep that it was often called demon possession. Families hid the crazy child in the attic or shipped him or her to far off places to avoid the shame associated with abnormality.

Even today, people fear being labeled by a mental health condition. People suffer in silence and try to hide their problems from friends, family, and co-workers. Misinformation and myths surround diseases of the brain and people with no personal experience of mental illness live in fear of people who are ill or they make jokes about the symptoms that further alienate people from the mainstream of life.

About 100 years ago, Sigmund Freud began our modern quest to understand the abnormalities of the brain and mental illness by studying the people so afflicted and finding ways to heal many of them who would have otherwise been pushed aside by society.

Psychology and Psychiatry today look at the whole gamut of causes and possible cures because mental illness is now recognized as not just a failing of the character or strength of mind, but as a tangible physical illness with causes related to everything from imbalanced chemicals in the blood to physical damage to the brain. Treatments are now available to assist with all these causes.

This recognition of the physical causes of mental illness has made seeking treatment easier for many. But more information must be made available to the public so everyone can be freed from stigma left over from the millennia fear and superstition that has surrounded it.

Controversy still surrounds diagnosis of mental illness and its treatments. Even whether treatment is a good thing. Many historical figures have been determined to have mental illness. It has been speculated that these great figures would not have made their great discoveries or created their great works of art if they had had access to our modern medicines to control their symptoms as we do today.

The only way to approach the subject is to talk about it. Write about it. Shed light on it for all to see and consider.



Jun 2, 2011 12:38pm
Mental health has come a long way and in today's times there is a pill for most ailments. Very well written.
Jun 11, 2011 2:42pm
Thanks Ellen.

My life has certainly been changed since I found the right psychiatrist, but I still find it hard to know when to be open with people about it. Usually, I'm just fine and in the long run it evens out, but sometimes I can use a little accommodation from people and struggle with asking for it. I get all kinds of reactions when I open up about it. Usually it ends up OK, but sometimes it's hard for the people I open up to.
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