First celebrated in 1992 and organized by the World Health Organization (WHO), World Mental Health Day is a global campaign in support of mental health awareness, education and advocacy.
This year’s theme, “Make mental health and well-being a global priority” approaches improving mental healthcare from a community perspective.
Further explaining the goals of Word Mental Health Day 2022 (observed on October 10), WHO said the following:
“Whilst the pandemic has, and continues to, take its toll on our mental health, the ability to reconnect through World Mental Health Day 2022 will provide us with an opportunity to rekindle our efforts to protect and improve mental health.”
It’s in this spirit that we share ways in which we can make our own mental health needs a priority, as well as how to support others with their mental health.
The Current State of Mental Health
WHO summarized the current state of mental health globally with the following statement:
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a global crisis for mental health, fueling short- and long-term stresses and undermining the mental health of millions. Estimates put the rise in both anxiety and depressive disorders at more than 25% during the first year of the pandemic. At the same time, mental health services have been severely disrupted and the treatment gap for mental health conditions has widened.”
This infographic featuring data from Mental Health America’s annual The State of Mental Health in America (2022) report provides additional insight into the current state of mental health in the U.S.
While the statistics may be daunting, we can change things for the better starting with ourselves and with the communities closest to us.
The Importance of Checking In on Your Own Mental Health
As the old adage goes, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” In order to give our best selves to others, we must first start by taking care of ourselves first and foremost. This starts with self-care, introspection and good therapeutic, physical and mental practices.
So how can you tell if you may be struggling with your mental health? Through regular self check-ins!
Here are a few questions to ask yourself to get you started…
- How am I feeling today?
- How have I been feeling emotionally?
- What worries have I had recently?
- How has my sleep been recently? Have I been getting too little or too much sleep?
- Do I need to take frequent naps just to get through the day?
- How have I been feeling physically?
- Have I noticed any physical symptoms lately such as frequent headaches, stomach aches, fatigue, weight loss or weight gain?
- Have I been feeling distracted lately or having trouble concentrating?
- Do I regularly participate in activities that I enjoy, or do I find myself losing interest in my hobbies?
- Do I feel overwhelmed or burnt out?
It’s easy to get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that we forget to reflect on how we are actually doing. By taking just a few minutes to check in with yourself each day, or even once a week, we can keep on top of our mental health care routine, and notice when we might need extra help, such as through therapy.
In addition to individual therapy, group therapy can be a great way to build community, improve your mental health, and learn from and connect with others going through similar struggles.
To learn more about both individual and group therapy options through Valera Health, click here to request a free consultation with a dedicated health connector or visit valerahealth.com.
We’re In This Together: A Community Approach to Mental Health
In addition to taking care of our own mental health, there are many ways we can approach mental healthcare as a community.
This can include many things such as giving more compliments, challenging yourself to at least one act of kindness per day, checking up on friends and family, and volunteering and/or donating to mental health organizations such as the National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI), Mental Health America or others.
If you or a loved one is in need of additional support for your mental health, Valera Health offers affordable telemental health services including therapy and psychiatry for patients ages 6-and-up.
Our diverse team of compassionate mental healthcare specialists are highly trained in serving patients in communities such as the LGBTQ+ community; children, adolescents and families; those going through difficult transitions of all kinds; those with Serious Mental Illnesses (SMI) such as bipolar I & II, personality disorders and schizophrenia; and much more.
To learn more, request a free consultation with one of our health connectors or visit valerahealth.com.