Mental Health Awareness week this year runs from the 13th to 19th May. It is important we are aware of mental health and mental health issues. Being aware is key if we are to have and lead healthy lives. Everything that begins to challenge our very existence has something to do with mental health.
Good mental health allows us to think, feel and react in positive and productive ways. Poor mental health means how we think, feel or react to situations will become difficult, in certain cases impossible. Mental health issues will affect 1:4 each year with problems ranging from depression and anxiety to Bipolar Disorder.
Body image is also part of mental health week and although we may see body image as an individual issue, we’re not always aware it is a mental health problem. Body image issues affect 91% of women and although it usually starts in adolescence when our bodies begin to change, it can affect all of us at any age. A life changing reaction can change the way we think about ourselves.
It is important we understand why body image impacts the way we feel. It has everything to do with how we feel about ourselves, our upbringing: our environment is very much a breeding ground for feeling bad about ourselves. What we hear and see growing up is the catalyst for how we become.
If our parents or family struggle with insecurities, we will struggle also… not necessarily with the same issues, but we will unconsciously start to hone-in on the things we see as an issue. But mental health is something we need to understand fully. It’s a spectrum, it’s important we understand and decide for ourselves if we’re on that spectrum.
Mental Health is something we can get better from. Through a combination of self-care, support and treatment, finding what’s right for us, can make us better.