Few day's backs we have done an experiment to reality testing of stigma towards mental health disorders.
In this Dr D. S. Poonia has updated his Facebook status as having a diagnosis (Bipolar affective disorder) of one of many mental health disorders.
The responses he had got was very interesting. These were the following:
1. Usually he got near about 4 hundred likes and around 60-80 comments on his new status, but here we were expecting few one. Same was happens. After a week, there was only 69 like and 4 comments . Now think what will happens if he updated his status with some other physical illness instead of mental one. Definitely picture will be different. Interestingly, he even not got a single comment of get well soon too. So, it seems that people either won’t consider it as an illness or something else other than a illness.
2. One of his friend made a call to him that people are calling him about his updated status. It’s around 10 in number . Some of these friends create a Whatsapp group to discuss the same.
3. His relatives start calling to his parents and in-laws about same and ask about what happens to him.
4. His very close friend too whom he met on same day too start calling to him about updated status.
5. One of his professional colleague called up him that please remove the updated status otherwise your profession will be affected by it very severely.
6. One of them comments get well soon, but it was past after revealing the purpose of update. Even after that people won't comment same.
In reality, same happens with a patient suffering from mental health disorders. People label them as PSYCHO. PAGAL, MENTAL, SANKI etc. Not even patient, Stigma is also presented towards mental health professionals as well as psychiatric medicine too.
In India, near about 17 crores (14%) of Indian population needs mental health intervention. Still, one out of ten people utilizes the professional help for mental health problems. Lack of awareness, STIGMA, and discrimination are the biggest hurdle against patients and their families for seeking mental health care.
To address STIGMA towards mental health disorder and raise awareness, The Mindroot Foundation is consistently involved in such activities to address the above-mentioned problems since it's establishment.
Stigma towards a mentally ill person is a big problem to help them. Please come together and help them to build a mentally healthy nation.
SAY NO TO STIGMA!