Medicine and mental health
- Health does not always come from medicine. Most of the time it comes from peace of mind. Short term stresses and worries are very common in our life. But when it lasts for a significant period of time, then it should be taken seriously. In recent years, a huge number of people are suffering from mental health problems worldwide. Among them mental health crisis in youths are revealing alarming reports. These mental health issues interfere with the personal, emotional, social, and educational life of a person. Various factors ranges from biological to psychosocial contribute to the development of the mental health problems. Now it is the time to take this matter seriously. In this endeavor, teachers, students, mental health professionals should work collaboratively to create sufficient awareness to check the mental health issues at the earliest and to minimize its effect in every spheres of life.
- So, In this regard, it is needed to be understand that mental illness is not a personal failure. So let’s talk about it and say no to stigma!
Mental health issues
- In recent years, it has been found that young persons suffering from mental health issues are increasing significantly. According to World Heath Report (2001), around 450 millions people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill – health and disability world wide. Among the mental health sufferers, a good portion of youths have been found to be suffering from mental health problems severely. For them trying to do college work and managing other responsibilities, while experiencing mental illness can make it even harder. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), approximately 1 in 5 youth aged 13-18 live with mental health issues, develop them prior to the age of 24. Mental health conditions can make some learners withdraw inward rather than seeking help.
Prevalence of mental health issues faced by the school learners :
Mental health problems are very common among students today. There are various types of mental illness, the learners are suffering from. According to WHO, worldwide 10-20% of children and adolescents are suffering from mental health problems. Half of all mental illness begin by the age of 14 and three-quarters by mid-20. Many studies have been conducted worldwide to find out the mental health challenges faced by the children. Findings from some of these studies can be stated as follows :
- In one survey by the school teachers in Britain, Britain’s school children are found to be suffering from a range of mental health epidemics of anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts. In that survey teachers have seen anxiety as the most common problem faced by the children. Besides it has also been found that a pupil struggle with a mental health problem in the past year, with 14% cases involvingsuicidal thoughts or behavior, 45% cases with depression, 30% cases with eating disorder, 28% cases with self-harming tendency and 10% with addiction.
- In mental health research conducted by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), approximately 11% of children are diagnosed with a depressive disorder by the age of 18.
- The Anxiety and Depression Association of America found that 1 in 8 children are affected by anxiety, yet 80% of those with a diagnosable anxiety disorder do not receive treatment.
- In a study by National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) it is found that 70% of high school seniors have tried alcohol, 50% have tried an illegal drug, and more than 20% have used prescription drugs for a non-medical purpose.
- The data by the National Survey of Children’s Health indicates that approximately 6.1 million American children aged 2-17 had been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD).
- Data from the National Institute of Mental Health indicates that school children have the tendency of suffering from eating disorder.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, half a million American children have been diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
- From surveys like National Survey of Children’s Health, it is found that in America approximately 4.5 million children aged 3-17 years has been diagnosed with behavior problems; approximately 4.4 million children aged 3-17 years have been diagnosed with anxiety; and approximately 1.9 million children aged 3-17 years have been diagnosed with depression.
So from the above discussion it can be said that the mental health problems affect youths largely. Most of the mental health problem includes anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder(ocd), attention deficit hyper active disorder(adhd), eating disorder, drug addition etc.
- Mental health awareness is an important issue for all educators. It can be said that mental health has a connection with educational outcomes. So, keeping this fact in mind. necessary knowledge and skills to be imparted as a comprehensive, integrated health education programme, They include :
- Life skills education
- Basic knowledge of risk factors
- Basic knowledge of mental disorders
- Ability to recognize psychosocial and mental disorders
- Classroom management of psychosocial problems
- Mental health interventions
- Use of referral resources
The knowledge and skills should be maintained or updated through workshops and continuing educational activities.
In the present days, the numbers of mental health problems sufferers are rising at a high rate, and where these problems does not limit in the age range of adult hood- it also affects greatly the children and adolescents. So mental health awareness is required to live a healthy life.
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