India joins world in observing Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day

New Delhi: India today joined the International community in observing the World Mental Health Day with Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment launching a series of week-long programmes to mark the occasion.

The mental health trauma has emerged as one of the most prevalent lifestyle disorders that include depression, Anger, personality disorders, Panic attacks, Phobias, psychosis, stress, suicidal feelings etc. According to WHO one in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.

Treatments are available, but nearly two-thirds of people with a known mental disorder never seek help from a health professional. Stigma, discrimination and neglect prevent care and treatment from reaching people with mental disorders.

To protect and to aware those people 10th October is observed as World Mental Health Day. It is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy against social stigma.

It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries. This day, each October, thousands of supporters come to celebrate this annual awareness program to bring attention to mental illness and its major effects on peoples’ life worldwide. In some countries this day is part of an awareness week, such as Mental Health Week.

In India, the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has prepared a series of activities to be undertaken during the week by its various National Institutes to raise awareness about Mental Health issues including identification of early signs to prevent aggravation and rehabilitation/mainstreaming of successfully cured mentally ill persons.

The programmes will include Nukkad Natak, Brain Storming sessions amongst students, Run for Happiness, Talk Shows and Human Chain Smiley. Various posters relevant to the subject will be displayed in prominent places in institutes. Other programmes will involve CRCs & other areas of activities, holding of seminars involving various faculty members, awareness activities including stage play, theatre, essays, debate competition, publicizing success stories where people have overcome depression, suicidal tendencies, and who are now well integrated with societies.

The ministry will also sensitize various NGOs in the vicinity of Institutes and will also hold meetings in residential areas to make parents and youth about the problem.

 

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