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Mental Health Day - When and Why It Is Celebrated

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. October 11, 2022
Mental Health Day - When and Why It Is Celebrated

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel and act as we face life. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others and make decisions. Mental health is important at all stages of life, from childhood and adolescence to adulthood and old age.

World Mental Health Day (WHD) represents a global commitment to raise awareness of mental health issues worldwide and mobilize efforts to support mental health. The COVID -19 pandemic has exacerbated the mental health situation in the Region by leading to an increase in new cases of mental illness and a worsening of existing conditions.

The following oneHOWTO article explains what is World Mental Health Day, why it is celebrated and its importance.

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  1. When is world mental health day?
  2. Why is world mental health day celebrated?
  3. How world mental health day is celebrated?

When is world mental health day?

World Mental Health Day (WHD), celebrated annually on October 10, is sponsored by the World Federation for Mental Health and supported by the World Health Organization (WHO).

It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries. Until 1994, the day had no specific theme other than general mental health promotion and public education.

Why is world mental health day celebrated?

World Mental Health Day aims to bring awareness to the most serious mental disorders that affect members of global society.

As a result, strategies can be developed to support these people and enable them to cope with or be cured of their illness. The effort to diagnose and treat mental disorders at an early age reduces financial costs in the future and avoids all kinds of subsequent problems, such as suicide.

This World Mental Health Day should be an opportunity for all mental health advocates to point out what still needs to be done to make mental health care a reality around the world. This day calls for recognizing the importance of mental health, being more open and understanding about it, and prioritizing the availability of and access to care and treatment.

Depression is the leading cause of health problems and disability worldwide. The World Health Organization estimates that more than 300 million people live with depression, an increase of more than 18% between 2005 and 2015. Depression is an illness that can affect anyone. It causes mental anguish and impairs people's ability to perform their daily tasks, which regularly has a negative impact on relationships with family and friends.

In the Americas, mental, neurological, and substance use disorders (MNS) and suicide account for more than one-third (34%) of total years lived with disability. Nearly 100,000 people die by suicide each year in the region.

Because it is often misunderstood, stigmatized, and often untreated, mental health has become a crisis. In the first year of COVID -19, the global prevalence of anxiety and depression increased by 25%, with adolescents and women being the most affected. Mental health and physical health are interrelated, and emotional distress such as anxiety and depression can affect a person's quality of life and that of those around them.

It is estimated that half of all mental illnesses begin before the age of 14, but in most cases they are neither detected nor treated. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescents between the ages of 15 and 29.

Each year, a different theme is chosen. These have been the ones for the last five years:

  • 2018:Young people and mental health in a changing world
  • 2019: Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention
  • 2020: Move for mental health: Increased investment in mental health
  • 2021: Mental Health in an Unequal World
  • 2022: Make Mental Health & Well-Being for All a Global Priority

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Mental Health Day - When and Why It Is Celebrated - Why is world mental health day celebrated?

How world mental health day is celebrated?

You can participate in World Mental Health Day and celebrate it from anywhere in the world. Simply access one of the official channels of the World Health Organization on social networks and follow live broadcasts of the events organized around the world.

You can also ask questions to the experts invited to these events and share your opinions using the hashtag #WorldMentalHealthDay.

Finally, you too can do your part to eliminate the stigma of mental illness. Below are some things you can do to change your perspective and that of others.

  • Educate yourself about mental illness, including substance use disorders.

  • Become aware of your attitudes and behaviors. Question your own judgmental thinking, which is reinforced by education and society.

  • Words have the power to influence attitudes, so choose your words carefully.

  • Challenge myths and stereotypes with facts and positive attitudes.

  • Focus on the positive. An individual's mental illness, including addiction, is only one part of their overall picture.

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Mental Health Day - When and Why It Is Celebrated