Why is understanding and addressing mental health important?
What is mental health?
- Mental health is a broad term that covers our emotional, psychological and social well-being. Our thoughts, feelings and behaviour are all directly impacted by our mental health. It can change the way we handle stress, relate to people and make decisions.
- Poor mental health can range from periods of feeling down or low, through to more serious disorders such as anxiety and depression. In extreme cases this can also include more severe and less common conditions such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
- 1 in 4 people suffer from mental illness at some point in their life.
Why is it important to understand and address mental health?
- Despite the high number of people who suffer from mental health issues, there is still stigma attached to this illness.
- Increasing the conversation around mental health, in our homes, with friends and in the workplace, will begin to reduce the social stigma and taboo surrounding the subject.
- Raising awareness will increase the likelihood that those experiencing problems will feel more comfortable to talk about it and seek help and support from loved ones, colleagues and medical professionals.
- A survey conducted by Time to Change showed that 60% of people with a mental illness waited over a year to tell the people closest to them about it. Our hope is that by increasing awareness, it will in turn reduce the feeling of isolation often experienced by those who suffer with this illness.
For more information on the importance of raising awareness of mental ill health, please click here to visit the Time to Change website.
Why is it so important to raise awareness of mental health in the workplace?
- 1 in 6.8 people experience mental health problems in the workplace. This is an extremely high number which is creating a closed-off culture with 67% of employees feeling scared, embarrassed or unable to talk about mental health concerns with their employer.
- It is important for employees to feel comfortable enough in their working environment to be able to have an open dialogue with their employer about their mental health and any issues they may be facing.
- Increasing awareness of this in the workplace can help individuals to broach the subject with colleagues, line managers or HR and in turn can lead to increased support and understanding in the workplace.
Information and support
For any help or advice in the meantime, the following websites provide excellent support and guidance for all mental health issues: