Do you know that despite the fact that we are living in the 21st century, there is still a significant stigma attached to mental illness? The derogatory term mentally ill is often associated only with the most serious conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Do you know that the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, DM, actually lists a wide range of psychiatric conditions including everything from primary insomnia to nicotine dependence? Yet most people would never regard someone who’s been having trouble sleeping for the past month OR a two-pack-a-day-smoker as having a mental disorder, now would they?
Do you know that mental disorders are quite prevalent and affect far more people than we might think? Some disorders like acute stress disorder, last for only a few days to a few weeks and then subside. Others recur, which is often the case with disorders like major depression. But others like schizophrenia, can last for much longer.
Do you know that despite all the advances of science, we still don’t know what causes the vast majority of mental disorders? In most cases, it is believed to be a combination of factors.
Do you know that the traditional treatment for most mental disorders usually involves psychotropic medication, psychotherapy or a combination of both but … there is still no test that gives an accurate diagnosis of the patient’s condition.
Do you know that we still have a long way to go and much to learn? Hopefully, there will come a day when mental illness will be truly understood. Advances in science will allow even those on the most severe end of the spectrum to live happy lives with treatment, or better still … there will be a cure.