HEALTH

Simple Ways to Address Mental Health Stigma

Wednesday 1 December 2021, 4:48PM
By Premium SEO NZ
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Even in the current age of far greater mental health awareness, the stigmatisation of individuals who seek out therapy still occurs. However, one simple way of countering mental health stigma is to grasp not only that therapy can significantly improve individuals with severe cases’ lives, but that it can actually benefit just about anyone.

That is, it is often assumed that only ‘weak’ people, or those with some kind of serious psychological issue like depression or OCD seek out the help of a mental health practitioner. But the reality is, psychologists can help with a wide variety of issues, and in the same way that precious few see weakness in going to a general practitioner or dentist for regular check-ups, there is no shame in going to therapy, even if it’s just to ‘check your gauges’.

Aside from the more commonly known treatments for things like anxiety, trauma, or marriage counselling, psychologists can also assist with goal orientation and achievement; general relationship improvement between friends, family members, and/or colleagues; and phobia relief. Partnering with a psychologist can also help individuals seeking to lose weight, change career paths, or simply remove any mental or emotional ‘fluff’ that might be hindering their general health and wellbeing.

For anyone looking to reduce stigma or support a loved one in therapy, one Prahran psychologist suggests that normalising psychological health is key. In other words, rather than judging someone for seeking help, it may be good to see such a step as a healthy and even necessary choice for a more fulfilling life. If more people began taking stock of their own emotional, mental, and relational wellbeing in the same way as physical health, it could go a long way to destigmatising both mental health issues and the practice of seeking assistance in addressing them.