Five misconceptions about mental health
Those suffering with mental health issues have had to face stigma for many years due to the invisible nature of the illness. Although there has been a large improvement in the attitude towards mental health, we still see many assumptions that are simply not correct. Here are five of our most common misconceptions when it comes to mental health.
- You are either mentally ill or mentally healthy
In a similar way to physical health, it is inaccurate to suggest that someone is 100% mentally healthy. There are many different factors that can affect someone’s mental health and these can vary greatly in the severity of the impact these have on a persons overall state of mental health. It is not a simple case of being either mentally ill or mentally healthy, we all have good and bad days.
- Men don’t suffer mental illness
A common misconception is that men are less susceptible to suffering from mental health issues than women because they are generally physically stronger. In contrast to this assumption, male suicide rates in the UK are actually about three times higher than those of females. This is often exacerbated by the fact that many men do not like to talk to someone when they are suffering with their mental health.
- Mental illness is rare
Many people suffer with mental illness and often feel like they are alone, however the reality is that this couldn’t be further from the truth. One in four people will experience a mental health problem in any given year, so there is no need to feel isolated if you are going through this.
- Mental illness often leads to violence
The majority of people suffering with mental illness are no more likely to be violent towards you than any other member of the general public. In fact, those facing these issues are in fact ten times more likely to have been a victim of violence.
- Mental health problems are a sign of weakness
Perhaps the biggest misconception for mental health is that those suffering with mental illness must be weak. Many people feel that they cannot express their concerns because of this stigma. Luckily this mind-set has started to change over the past 20 years but there is still a long way to go.
If you’ve suffered from a mental health issue or know someone who is suffering, there are multiple charitable organisations that offer free support. If you’ve been effected by any of these common misconceptions please seek help, you are not alone.
Pulse is a leading supplier of healthcare professionals to the UK mental health sector. We continue to support clients and healthcare professionals in both the NHS and private sector to achieve a unified approach to mental health.