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Artful Therapy

Awareness is caring for mind and body

by Shay Bakht


Since 2000, every year, for the second week of May, the UK recognizes Mental Health Awareness Week; many supporters host events to combat stigma surrounding mental health, to share their experiences, and to raise awareness or start a conversation about mental health. This year, the organization that coordinated the week – the Mental Health Foundation – has selected the theme of ‘Surviving or Thriving’ and they intend to educate individuals about resources that are available to the public to deal with mental health problems.

The truth is that this week is an opportunity for the UK to discuss a crucial topic that is often ignored. According to the NHS, ‘one in six adults surveyed in England met the criteria for a common mental disorder in 2014.’ In 2017, another survey was commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation and they concluded on their website that its results show that ‘current levels of mental health are disturbingly low’ and ‘deteriorating’.

Both surveys show that young adults suffer from mental health issues more than the older demographic. It can be understood that these issues stem from insecurities about the future and may even be a reflection of the pressure they face from society. If you are suffering from a mental health disorder, there are many organizations dedicated to helping you deal with them.

There is also free help available if you visit a GP or check out the Mental Health Foundation’s website (www.mentalhealth.org.uk). These resources are available all year round and are not limited to Mental Health Awareness Week, but while we put mental health at the forefront of our lives for these seven days, talk to your friends and families about their mental health and share your own experience. The first step is to destigmatize these conversations.

Want to know how well you are? Then take the survey at: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/your-mental-health/good-mental-health-survey