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6 Films That Actually Depict Mental Illness (Mostly) Well
As you might know, May is annual Mental Health Awareness Month — a time that gives us space to discuss mental illness and prioritize our mental health. One of the great things about film, and art in general, is the way it can move the needle or start necessary conversations. When it comes to mental illness, on-screen representation matters. That shouldn’t be a surprise. What might be shocking, though, is just how lacking representation is, even in 2022.
According to a study conducted by the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative (USC AII) and published in May 2019, “Out of 4,598 speaking characters across the 100 top films of 2016, only 76 [or 1.7 percent] were depicted with a significant or persistent mental health condition.” As the study points out, this is a stark contrast with our reality: roughly 20 percent of adults in the U.S. live with a mental health condition and/or mental illness. To make matters more frustrating, when characters with mental illnesses are depicted, the portrayals often reinforce harmful stereotypes.
Still, art has the propensity to dismantle the stigma and stereotypes surrounding mental illness. Accurate, nuanced depictions of mental illness and disorders can help people living with those conditions feel seen and less alone. Additionally, films that center mentally ill characters can educate others, help us build support systems and dispel harmful misinformation. Here, we’re looking at some films that harness that potential. But first, what has Hollywood been getting wrong for so long?
Editor’s Note: This article contains mentions of various mental illnesses and mental health disorders as well as discussions of how some of these illnesses and disorders are portrayed, both accurately and poorly, in film. Additionally, while the films selected later on in the article depict mental illness and mental disorders accurately for the most part, it’s important to note that these depictions may not resonate for some readers as everyone’s experience with mental illness and mental health disorders is nuanced and specific.
Why Is It Important to Accurately Depict Characters With Mental Illness?
In both film and TV, mental health is often stigmatized, used as a plot device, or trivialized. You know, made into a character “quirk” instead of being taken seriously. The study mentioned above found that of 87 film characters who have mental health conditions or mental illness about 47 percent of characters were disparaged; 22 percent of characters’ mental health conditions or mental illness were met with humor; and 15 percent of characters felt the need to conceal their mental health condition or mental illness.
Moreover, when characters with mental illness are portrayed on screen, 46 percent of them were found to be perpetrators of violence. Regardless of intention, most films and shows normalize name-calling, with characters slinging words like “psycho,” “crazy,” “freak,” “silly,” “nuts,” “weird” and “monster” at other characters who outwardly express a mental illness.
The study also shows that when there is representation, it’s not reflective of most audience members’ identities or experiences. For example, while 20 percent of teenagers in the U.S. experience a mental health condition, only 7 percent of film characters (of that 87) were teens.
Further Disparities in Mental Healthcare & On-Screen Representation
Mental Health America found that 6.8 million Black Americans report having a diagnosable mental illness, but, despite this fact, only 11 of the characters with mental health conditions surveyed by USC AII were Black. This trend of underrepresentation continues for all people of color: Only four of the characters in the survey were Asian people; only one character was a multiracial person; and none of the characters identified as Hispanic, Latinx, Middle Eastern, Native Hawai’ian or Pacific Islander, or as Indigenous or First Nations peoples.
Additionally, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has found that LGB adults are more than twice as likely as straight adults to experience a mental health condition. Not to mention, LGBTQ+ people are at a higher risk than cis and/or straight people for suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. But portrayals of mental illness often leave out the LGBTQ+ community as well — especially when it comes to trans and nonbinary characters.
Out of 50 TV shows surveyed by USC AII, just eight LGB characters experienced mental health conditions, while the transgender community wasn’t represented at all. And, out of 100 films, none of the characters with mental health conditions identified as being part of the LGBTQ+ community.
All of this is to say that, in addition to stigmatizing mental illness, on-screen depictions often don’t account for the multifaceted experiences of most folks, nor do these depictions account for the way the aspects of an individual may intersect. There’s hardly any accounting for diversity in race, gender or sexual orientation at all, nor is there an attempt to understand how those intersections of identity may interact with mental health conditions or illness.
Common Onscreen Faux Pas
In order to shift how stories portray characters with mental health conditions and mental illness, USC AII suggests that writers ask themselves a very fundamental question: Why am I telling this story? This can help creators avoid common pitfalls, like depicting unnecessary stigma, using a mental health condition as a plot device, and/or making mental illness into the punchline.
To be frank, the lived experiences of folks who have mental health conditions and illnesses are missing from popular culture. And, when these experiences are depicted, they’re often displayed irresponsibly: Netflix’s series 13 Reasons Why was heavily criticized for its depiction of death by suicide, an act that’s often romanticized or shown as “the only choice” a character can make.
As in life, medication is stigmatized, with characters eschewing treatment because it inhibits them in some way — such as the old trope of an artist who can’t create because they feel blocked by their medication. Moreover, because mental health conditions and illnesses are stigmatized and often associated with shame — a dark secret a character must hide or can’t talk about — they often aren’t surrounded by any sort of support system.
And then there’s the association between mental illness and violence that’s particularly prevalent in the horror genre, which derives scares from our very human fear of the “unknown” or the “unfamiliar.” For example, in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic Psycho , a movie that spawned countless slasher films, the main character, serial killer Norman Bates, is given a “diagnosis” by a psychiatrist, who cites a “split personality” as the source of Bates’ violent tendencies. “When the mind houses two personalities, there is always a battle,” he says. “In Norman’s case, the battle is over and the dominant personality has won.”
A writer for Resources to Recover states that although the Academy Award-winning A Beautiful Mind “may have done more than any other popular movie to combat stigma and draw attention to the positive contributions of people with serious mental health disorders,” it still misses the mark, prioritizing a Hollywood twist over the reality of schizophrenia.
Another acclaimed miss? Silver Linings Playbook . While the dramedy, which centers on two characters with bipolar disorder, may depict the toll mental illness takes on individuals and families in a more realistic, nuanced way, it misses the mark by going the “cure” route, instead of reiterating that mental illness is about management . When the main characters get together, finding love feels inextricably linked to their mental well-being.
Perhaps this speaks more to the limitations of film and the need for resolution. But, limitations or not, this sort of resolution perpetuates the idea that something is “wrong” with the characters and that they can heal one another if they just try hard enough.
Movies That Depict Mental Illness (Mostly) Well
Inside out (2015).
In this landmark film from animation giant Pixar, a young girl named Riley (Kaitlyn Dias) deals with depression when her family moves from Minnesota to San Francisco. The film personifies the emotions that exist inside Riley and influence how she presents herself to the outside world. Two of those emotions, Sadness (Phyllis Smith) and Joy (Amy Poehler), drive the plot.
By her nature, Joy just wants to find a way for Riley to be happy again before she completely shuts down. On the outside, Riley represses her emotions, lashes out at her parents and tries to run away. In the end, Sadness convinces Joy that it’s more than okay to be sad sometimes. It’s actually better to feel sad, to talk about those feelings, than to mask them with faux-happiness.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)
Writer Stephen Chbosky decided to adapt his seminal young adult novel into a film because he feels it’s “harder to feel alone if you see dozens of people around you laughing and crying or nodding their heads at the same issues.” It also helps that the film depicts the main character Charlie’s (Logan Lerman) depression in a nuanced, genuine way: Charlie makes new best friends and shares real happiness and laughter with them. What he doesn’t share? Everything that’s bottled up inside of him.
The film has also received praise for how it portrays post-traumatic stress insofar as Charlie is navigating his memories of childhood sexual abuse in addition to a depression that those around him link to other events in his life. Moreover, Charlie’s romantic relationship with Sam (Emma Watson) doesn’t magically fix or save him; instead, she’s just one part of his support system and helps him, boundaries intact, to navigate his mental illness.
The film’s director has said the aptly-titled Melancholia stems from his own experiences with a depressive episode, but, even more so, it’s the execution of this movie that really resonates. The story centers on two sisters, Justine and Claire, played by Kirsten Dunst and Charlotte Gainsbourg respectively.
While Justine prepares for her wedding, she navigates her depression — as well as the fact that a rogue planet is set to collide catastrophically with Earth. Often, it’s difficult to capture depression on film or in writing, but Melancholia ‘s pervasive sense of impending doom, of lethargy, feels like an apt way to portray the protagonist’s mental health disorder.
Sure, Frozen has an anthropomorphic snowman and a wildly catchy song that our brains just can’t let go of, but Elsa (Idina Menzel) and her ice powers are also the perfect metaphor for dealing with anxiety and depression, which director Jennifer Lee says is no coincidence.
After hurting her sister with her ice powers as a child, Elsa locks herself away in her room and lives by the mantra “conceal, don’t feel”. For Elsa, her past mistake means she deserves isolation. In the end, Elsa learns that must manage her emotion-fueled powers instead of trying to hide them.
Horse Girl (2020)
Called an “unorthodox” take on mental illness by IndieWire , Horse Girl stars Alison Brie ( Glow , Promising Young Woman ) as Sarah, a young woman who finds her day-to-day life uprooted after her dreams seem to spill into her real life.
As the film progresses, the audience learns that Sarah’s family has a history of mental illness, which makes her, at times, unwilling to trust what she’s seeing or thinking. Unlike other thriller-like films that toe that not-quite-sure-what’s-real line, Horse Girl feels more intentional.
Not only is the film anchored by Brie’s strong performance and a Charlie Kaufman-esque narrative structure, but it’s informed by the star’s own lived experiences. Calling it “quite a personal project,” Brie explained that her character stems from her own family history.
“My mother’s mother lived with paranoid schizophrenia and I grew up hearing stories about her and my mother’s childhood and just knowing that mental illness existed in my bloodline,” Brie told IndieWire. “The older I get and the more I have my own bouts of depression and struggles I become acutely aware that this [mental illness] is in my DNA.”
Synecdoche, New York (2008)
Speaking of Charlie Kaufman, the writer-director’s postmodern film, Synecdoche, New York , never puts a name to what its protagonist, Caden (Philip Seymour Hoffman) is experiencing, but it does resonate as a depiction of mental illness in some ways. Caden, a theater director, attempts to stage an increasingly elaborate show.
In fact, the attempt goes on for years and years because he can’t quite get his magnum opus right; doppelgängers, akin to folks in his shrinking personal life, populate the cast and crew; and, in general, his dedication to depicting realism end up blurring the lines between his play and his life.
It takes the Shakespearean notion of “a play within a play” much further. We see Caden strive for perfectionism, deal with intrusive thoughts, and grapple with the anxiety surrounding how others perceive him and his work, all of which feel akin to how some individuals experience obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), even if the film never names it.
Looking for more quality representation? Check out our related roundup, 11 Shows That Depict Mental Illness (Mostly) Well .
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- Mental Health Essay
Essay on Mental Health
According to WHO, there is no single 'official' definition of mental health. Mental health refers to a person's psychological, emotional, and social well-being; it influences what they feel and how they think, and behave. The state of cognitive and behavioural well-being is referred to as mental health. The term 'mental health' is also used to refer to the absence of mental disease.
Mental health means keeping our minds healthy. Mankind generally is more focused on keeping their physical body healthy. People tend to ignore the state of their minds. Human superiority over other animals lies in his superior mind. Man has been able to control life due to his highly developed brain. So, it becomes very important for a man to keep both his body and mind fit and healthy. Both physical and mental health are equally important for better performance and results.
Importance of Mental Health
An emotionally fit and stable person always feels vibrant and truly alive and can easily manage emotionally difficult situations. To be emotionally strong, one has to be physically fit too. Although mental health is a personal issue, what affects one person may or may not affect another; yet, several key elements lead to mental health issues.
Many emotional factors have a significant effect on our fitness level like depression, aggression, negative thinking, frustration, and fear, etc. A physically fit person is always in a good mood and can easily cope up with situations of distress and depression resulting in regular training contributing to a good physical fitness standard.
Mental fitness implies a state of psychological well-being. It denotes having a positive sense of how we feel, think, and act, which improves one’s ability to enjoy life. It contributes to one’s inner ability to be self-determined. It is a proactive, positive term and forsakes negative thoughts that may come to mind. The term mental fitness is increasingly being used by psychologists, mental health practitioners, schools, organisations, and the general population to denote logical thinking, clear comprehension, and reasoning ability.
Negative Impact of Mental Health
The way we physically fall sick, we can also fall sick mentally. Mental illness is the instability of one’s health, which includes changes in emotion, thinking, and behaviour. Mental illness can be caused due to stress or reaction to a certain incident. It could also arise due to genetic factors, biochemical imbalances, child abuse or trauma, social disadvantage, poor physical health condition, etc. Mental illness is curable. One can seek help from the experts in this particular area or can overcome this illness by positive thinking and changing their lifestyle.
Regular fitness exercises like morning walks, yoga, and meditation have proved to be great medicine for curing mental health. Besides this, it is imperative to have a good diet and enough sleep. A person needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night on average. When someone is tired yet still can't sleep, it's a symptom that their mental health is unstable. Overworking oneself can sometimes result in not just physical tiredness but also significant mental exhaustion. As a result, people get insomnia (the inability to fall asleep). Anxiety is another indicator.
There are many symptoms of mental health issues that differ from person to person and among the different kinds of issues as well. For instance, panic attacks and racing thoughts are common side effects. As a result of this mental strain, a person may experience chest aches and breathing difficulties. Another sign of poor mental health is a lack of focus. It occurs when you have too much going on in your life at once, and you begin to make thoughtless mistakes, resulting in a loss of capacity to focus effectively. Another element is being on edge all of the time.
It's noticeable when you're quickly irritated by minor events or statements, become offended, and argue with your family, friends, or co-workers. It occurs as a result of a build-up of internal irritation. A sense of alienation from your loved ones might have a negative influence on your mental health. It makes you feel lonely and might even put you in a state of despair. You can prevent mental illness by taking care of yourself like calming your mind by listening to soft music, being more social, setting realistic goals for yourself, and taking care of your body.
Surround yourself with individuals who understand your circumstances and respect you as the unique individual that you are. This practice will assist you in dealing with the sickness successfully. Improve your mental health knowledge to receive the help you need to deal with the problem. To gain emotional support, connect with other people, family, and friends. Always remember to be grateful in life. Pursue a hobby or any other creative activity that you enjoy.
What does Experts say
Many health experts have stated that mental, social, and emotional health is an important part of overall fitness. Physical fitness is a combination of physical, emotional, and mental fitness. Emotional fitness has been recognized as the state in which the mind is capable of staying away from negative thoughts and can focus on creative and constructive tasks.
He should not overreact to situations. He should not get upset or disturbed by setbacks, which are parts of life. Those who do so are not emotionally fit though they may be physically strong and healthy. There are no gyms to set this right but yoga, meditation, and reading books, which tell us how to be emotionally strong, help to acquire emotional fitness.
Stress and depression can lead to a variety of serious health problems, including suicide in extreme situations. Being mentally healthy extends your life by allowing you to experience more joy and happiness. Mental health also improves our ability to think clearly and boosts our self-esteem. We may also connect spiritually with ourselves and serve as role models for others. We'd also be able to serve people without being a mental drain on them.
Mental sickness is becoming a growing issue in the 21st century. Not everyone receives the help that they need. Even though mental illness is common these days and can affect anyone, there is still a stigma attached to it. People are still reluctant to accept the illness of mind because of this stigma. They feel shame to acknowledge it and seek help from the doctors. It's important to remember that "mental health" and "mental sickness" are not interchangeable.
Mental health and mental illness are inextricably linked. Individuals with good mental health can develop mental illness, while those with no mental disease can have poor mental health. Mental illness does not imply that someone is insane, and it is not anything to be embarrassed by. Our society's perception of mental disease or disorder must shift. Mental health cannot be separated from physical health. They both are equally important for a person.
Our society needs to change its perception of mental illness or disorder. People have to remove the stigma attached to this illness and educate themselves about it. Only about 20% of adolescents and children with diagnosable mental health issues receive the therapy they need.
According to research conducted on adults, mental illness affects 19% of the adult population. Nearly one in every five children and adolescents on the globe has a mental illness. Depression, which affects 246 million people worldwide, is one of the leading causes of disability. If mental illness is not treated at the correct time then the consequences can be grave.
One of the essential roles of school and education is to protect boys’ and girls' mental health as teenagers are at a high risk of mental health issues. It can also impair the proper growth and development of various emotional and social skills in teenagers. Many factors can cause such problems in children. Feelings of inferiority and insecurity are the two key factors that have the greatest impact. As a result, they lose their independence and confidence, which can be avoided by encouraging the children to believe in themselves at all times.
To make people more aware of mental health, 10th October is observed as World Mental Health. The object of this day is to spread awareness about mental health issues around the world and make all efforts in the support of mental health.
The mind is one of the most powerful organs in the body, regulating the functioning of all other organs. When our minds are unstable, they affect the whole functioning of our bodies. Being both physically and emotionally fit is the key to success in all aspects of life. People should be aware of the consequences of mental illness and must give utmost importance to keeping the mind healthy like the way the physical body is kept healthy. Mental and physical health cannot be separated from each other. And only when both are balanced can we call a person perfectly healthy and well. So, it is crucial for everyone to work towards achieving a balance between mental and physical wellbeing and get the necessary help when either of them falters.
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Essay on Mental Health in English for School Students
Mental Health Essay: Here, students can find essays on mental health in English. These 100, 150, 200, and 500 word essays on mental health can be used by students in competitions and various examinations. Mental Health is an important part of our lives that should not be neglected and openly discussed as much as well -being of our physical health is discussed.
Mental Health Essay: What do you think is important for the well-being of a person? Is the physical fitness of a person enough to consider him/her in a sound situation? The answer is ‘NO’. A person can be said to be fit only if he/she is both physically and mentally in good shape. Mental health refers to the psychological, emotional, and social well-being of a person. In fact, it is more important than being physically fit because your physical wellness is somehow dependent on your mental health.
Open and free discussion on mental health was an underrated topic of conversation until 1922, when the World Federation for Mental Health declared 10th October as World Mental Health Day. Since then, the day has been celebrated to spread awareness about mental health issues, educate people about mental health problems, and impart the knowledge that it is okay to have a mental health issue, to seek help, and to meet a mental health doctor. The day aims to fight against the social stigma posed by society on its people and indulge everyone in an open discussion about this sensitive topic.
Here, students can find essays on Mental Health in 100 words, 150 words, 200 words, and 500 words. These can be useful in essay and speech competitions, and various other occasions. These can be used as an inspiration by students to create something of their own.
Mental Health Essay in 100 Words
Find here, a 100-word essay on Mental health. This can be used to gain basic information about mental health or write a short paragraph on mental health in examinations.
Mental Health Essay in 150 Words
Here, students can find a 150 word essay on the mental health of students, in English. This will enhance your understanding of mental health and its importance.
Mental Health Essay in 200 Words
An essay on mental health in 200 words has been presented here. This will add to your knowledge about mental health and its importance.
Mental Health Essay in 500 Words
This 500 word essay on mental health in English is for school students. This can be used in various competitions, examinations, and other relevant occasions.
Mental Health 10-Line Explanation
Here are a few lines on Mental Health that students can use to gain knowledge and write their own essays, speeches, and more.
We hope this article was helpful to you and it could add to your knowledge. Mental Health is a sensitive topic that needs encouragement and embracement for open discussions. In order to build a world, where people are not hesitant about speaking about their mental health problems, it is significant to be more acceptable towards people. Every change that you want to see in the world should start with you. So, let’s all build a healthy and flourishing environment for people with serious mental health disorders.
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A Helping Hand: An Essay On The Importance Of Mental Health Parity
By: Sydney Waltner
More than half of all Americans will be diagnosed with a mental illness in their lifetime. But not everyone will receive the help they need. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, only forty percent of adults and fifty percent of youth receive the medical help they need. Even though mental illness is common and can affect anyone, there is still a great stigma attached. This stigma creates reluctance and shame in seeking help. The acceptance and understanding of mental illnesses has come a far way from where it used to be, but improvements can, and should still be made.
Mental illnesses should not be thought of any differently from physical illnesses. In fact, I believe the two are inseparable. Because the whole body is connected and interwoven, the two cannot be separated. The brain is an organ just like everything else in the body and can be hurt like everything else. When the brain is ill, it is not isolated in just the brain, but instead affects the whole body and the overall wellness. Substance abuse, self-harm, and suicide are very common and dangerous in those with mental illnesses. The stigma surrounding mental illness keeps people from getting the help they need to get better and causes them to hide their pain.
For three years I was one of those people hiding my illness. I was quietly suffering from depression and an eating disorder. My whole day revolved around my eating disorder and hiding it from everyone. This caused a lot of sadness, anger, and loneliness. I not only hid it from others, but I also tried to hide it from myself. I tried to convince myself that nothing was wrong because I did not fully understand what was happening. I did not know what was making me hurt myself and why I could not stop. As my weight was decreasing, my sadness and anger were quickly increasing. I became so mad and upset at everyone and everything. The stress and pressure of holding everything in caused me so much misery. If something small happened, it became too much to handle and I had to release it somehow. The only way I could think of to handle this was to hit myself and other things until I forgot about all my pain. By this time, it was impossible to hide my illness, and my family finally found out my deep secret. They did not want to see me suffer like that and wanted to help. They tried their hardest to help, but they just did not know how to help me. They tried to get me to go see somebody and get help, but I refused. I was scared of admitting that I had a mental illness and that I needed help. I was worried that people would judge me, treat me differently, or even bully me if they found out about my mental illness. So, I refused to get any help. I insisted that I was okay and could fix it myself. After a while of getting worse, my parents made me an appointment and told me I was going to get help. I remember crying and begging my mother to not make me go, but she did, and I am so grateful to her now.
For almost a year now I have been going to see a mental health counselor once a week. It took me a while to open up to her and tell her how I felt. But when I realized she was there for me and did not judge me, I was finally able to let her help me. Looking back now, I cannot believe how sick and miserable I was. I cannot imagine how my life would be if I had not received her help. I cannot express how grateful I am to her. She has changed my life for the better, I am so much happier and healthier now and look forward to living.
Receiving help is the most important thing anyone can do for themselves. But unfortunately, the stigma keeps people from getting help. Mental illness should not be something to be ashamed about or thought of differently. When mental illness is treated equally to other illnesses, more people will have the courage to get help and better their lives.
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Home — Essay Samples — Nursing & Health — Mental Illness — The Importance of Mental Health Awareness
The Importance of Mental Health Awareness
- Categories: Mental Illness Social Isolation Stress Management
About this sample
Table of contents
Introduction, mental health awareness, emotional well-being, psychological well‐being, social well-being.
- Health Effects of Social Isolation and Loneliness. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.aginglifecarejournal.org/health-effects-of-social-isolation-and-loneliness/.
- Top of Form Mental Health Myths and Facts https://www.mentalhealth.gov/basics/mental-health-myths-facts
- Mental Health Care Services by Family Physicians Position Paper. American Academy of Family Physicians Web site. http://www.aafp.org/online/en/home/policy/policies/m/mentalhealthcareservices.htm. Accessed February 11, 2013. [Google Scholar]
- Newman, T. (2017, August 24). Mental health: Definition, common disorders, and early signs. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/154543.php.
- Bottom of Form Rodriguez, B. D., Hurley, K., Upham, B., Kilroy, D. S., Dark, N., & Abreu, E (n.d.).Happiness and Emotional Well-Being. Retrieved from https://www.everydayhealth.com/emotional-health/understanding/index.aspx.
- World Health Organization. The Global Burden of Disease, 2004 Update. Part 4, Burden of Disease, DALYs. http://www.who.int/healthinfo/global_burden_disease/GBD_report_2004update_full.pdf . Accessed January 10, 2013. [Google Scholar]
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The world of ballet is highly competitive and is known to subject dancers to intense pressures in order to become perfect for their roles. Dancers are exposed to many internal and external forces that can prove to produce an [...]
World Health Organization. 'Mental Health: Strengthening Our Response.' World Health Organization, 2021.Conner, Tamlin S., et al. 'On carrots and curiosity: Eating fruit and vegetables is associated with greater flourishing in [...]
Mental health stigma is a pervasive issue that hinders individuals from seeking help, perpetuates myths, and marginalizes those who experience mental health challenges. This essay explores the nature of mental health stigma in [...]
However, psychology also uses behavior along with the mapping to the DSM from the checklist survey to separate genuine from faked mental illness and this epistemological problem can be solved using the proven to be successful [...]
Personality refers to individual differences in characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving. The study of personality focuses on two broad areas: One is understanding individual differences in particular [...]
Introduction to the prevalence of mental illness and its lack of understanding in society Mention of public and self-stigma as key issues Discussion of how movies and television portray mental illness [...]
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Mental Health Awareness by Abigail
Abigail's entry into Varsity Tutor's February 2022 scholarship contest
Mental Health Awareness by Abigail - February 2022 Scholarship Essay
The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed our lives. The pandemic has brought insurmountable levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. Bringing in a mental health awareness class to students can teach them how to deal, what signs to look for, and how to ask for help. Many people wonder how long the pandemic will last, what to do when they get sick, or what the future will hold. The added stress and anxiety will get to everyone, and it is terribly unhealthy. Bringing awareness to classrooms in schools can teach them about mental health, which in time grows their knowledge of mental health. When students learn about proper mental health and get a better understanding of what is really going on, they will feel more compelled to ask for help. Students will essentially become more comfortable. Recently, in my high school, our counselor has been showing these videos each morning during the week on how to reduce our stress and anxiety. Each morning we watch these short videos of deep breathing, guided imagery, and relaxation in the muscles to reduce stress. Simple things like that are great; however, an elective class that could properly teach about mental health would greatly benefit students. These students would get in-depth experience and knowledge about reducing their feeling of stress, anxiety, or depression. Learning all these tools will help generate better academics, better moods, reduce anxiety and depression, better thinking, and many more. Teenagers in high school go under incredible pressure every day, and it seems that people want to shove it aside because “teenagers should not be stressed about anything. They are still children”. Yes, we are still children, but that does not justify pushing our thoughts and feelings aside because we just haven’t had the experiences other adults have gone through.
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Mental Health Essay for Students and Children
500+ Words Essay on Mental Health
Every year world mental health day is observed on October 10. It was started as an annual activity by the world federation for mental health by deputy secretary-general of UNO at that time. Mental health resources differ significantly from one country to another. While the developed countries in the western world provide mental health programs for all age groups. Also, there are third world countries they struggle to find the basic needs of the families. Thus, it becomes prudent that we are asked to focus on mental health importance for one day. The mental health essay is an insight into the importance of mental health in everyone’s life.
In the formidable years, this had no specific theme planned. The main aim was to promote and advocate the public on important issues. Also, in the first three years, one of the central activities done to help the day become special was the 2-hour telecast by the US information agency satellite system.
Mental health is not just a concept that refers to an individual’s psychological and emotional well being. Rather it’s a state of psychological and emotional well being where an individual is able to use their cognitive and emotional capabilities, meet the ordinary demand and functions in the society. According to WHO, there is no single ‘official’ definition of mental health.
Thus, there are many factors like cultural differences, competing professional theories, and subjective assessments that affect how mental health is defined. Also, there are many experts that agree that mental illness and mental health are not antonyms. So, in other words, when the recognized mental disorder is absent, it is not necessarily a sign of mental health.
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One way to think about mental health is to look at how effectively and successfully does a person acts. So, there are factors such as feeling competent, capable, able to handle the normal stress levels, maintaining satisfying relationships and also leading an independent life. Also, this includes recovering from difficult situations and being able to bounce back.
Important Benefits of Good Mental Health
Mental health is related to the personality as a whole of that person. Thus, the most important function of school and education is to safeguard the mental health of boys and girls. Physical fitness is not the only measure of good health alone. Rather it’s just a means of promoting mental as well as moral health of the child. The two main factors that affect the most are feeling of inferiority and insecurity. Thus, it affects the child the most. So, they lose self-initiative and confidence. This should be avoided and children should be constantly encouraged to believe in themselves.
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