There are many stigmas attached to mental health in the United States. As more and more people come forward about their own mental health, it is time that you also step up to the plate. Advocating for yourself is a way that you can advocate for others. People in every community suffer from mental health issues, so it is important that the correct information about mental health is taught and that the stigma is erased. Here are just a few of the many ways in which you can help raise positive awareness for mental health in your community.
Talk About It
The first step in raising awareness for mental health is your willingness to talk to people about it. When you ask someone how his or her day was, ask sincerely. Talk to people about how they are really feeling, rather than passively ask without waiting for a genuine answer. Everyone has something they’re willing to share, and your willingness to talk about your mental health will surely rub off on those around you.
Share Your Story
Just like your willingness to talk about mental health will influence others, so will your willingness to share your story. Your personal mental health journey may not be very easy to talk about, but it is imperative if you want to raise awareness to those in your community. People connect and identify with your story, no matter how personal it may be. Others have had very similar experiences, and hearing your story will motivate others to do the same.
There are many ways you can encourage others when it comes to mental health. A great first step is to encourage non-judgmental speak. This is one way to eradicate the stigma surrounding mental illness. Encourage friends and loved ones to be screened for mental illness and talk to mental health professionals. Encourage people around you to eat healthy meals that will keep their mental health in check.
Learn and Educate
Learn the signs and symptoms of depression. Know what to look for in yourself and people around you, and teach your friends and family the signs as well. Learn what to do if someone talks about or threatens suicide. Memorize the Suicide Prevention Hotline number (1-800-273-TALK), and share it with others. All of these tools will help you know what to do in case of emergency, and spreading the word will only create more advocates for mental health in your community. It’s time to erase the stigma and educate everyone you know.
Welcome to Family Service Foundation, Inc.!
Family Service Foundation, Inc. has been serving the greater Maryland area since 1936. This nonprofit organization helps Maryland residents across a span of different areas such as mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse, and provides interpretation for deaf and deaf-blind individuals. To learn more about cerebral palsy or other developmental disabilities, visit here.