Mental Health Awareness

Author - Dr. Ajay Kumar

World Mental Health Day - A Universal Human Right

Mental health is all about how we feel, act, and think. A person who is emotionally healthy is capable of coping with challenges faced in life, handling stressful situations, enjoying life, and maintaining meaningful relationships with others. Mental illnesses, on the other hand, are serious conditions that can affect how well a person functions.


Every year, we come together to celebrate World Mental Health Day on the 10th of October. For 2023, the World Foundation of Mental Health has set the theme as "Mental health is a universal human right."

World Mental Health Day serves as a reminder that mental health is an essential part of our overall well-being. It's a fundamental human right that belongs to each one of us, regardless of who we are or where we come from. Good mental health is not just an option; it's a necessity for leading a fulfilling life. Shocking as it may be, one in every eight people around the world grapple with mental health conditions. These conditions affect not only their mental well-being but also their physical health, relationships, and livelihoods. On this day, we come together to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and ensure that everyone's mental health is respected as a universal human right. According to the World Health Organization, mental health is described as a state of well-being where a person can recognize their abilities, cope with life's stresses, work productively, and contribute to their community.


Most Common Mental Health Issues


Dealing with and managing stressors is an important part of life. However, when you start feeling like your thoughts, emotions, and behavior are getting out of control to the point where they affect your relationships, work, or overall well-being, it's time to seek professional help. Everyone experiences stress at some point and it's normal to feel worried, tense, upset, sad, or angry. But too much stress can trigger mental illness which can worsen things in the long run. If you're finding it difficult to cope with your daily activities or if stress is taking over your life, it's important to get help. Mental illness can make a person miserable and lead to problems at work, school, or in relationships. Fortunately, most mental health symptoms can be managed with a combination of medication and counseling.


Anxiety can have both physical and mental effects on us. When feeling anxious, you may notice symptoms such as increased heart rate, headaches, loss of appetite, breathlessness, or chest pain. If you experience any of these symptoms, it's important to see a healthcare professional to rule out any other physical causes. Anxiety can also lead to feelings of tension, nervousness, tearfulness, difficulty relaxing, sleeping, and concentrating. Your friends and family may notice that you're more irritable or withdrawn than usual, or you may appear calm outwardly but feel panicked inside.

There are several things that can help alleviate anxiety, such as physical activity, spending time in nature, practicing breathing techniques, seeking support to address financial concerns, and maintaining a healthy diet. Taking the first step to talk to a friend or loved one can also be helpful in managing anxiety.


Clinically significant depression is a mental health condition characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, a lack of interest in activities that were once enjoyable, and other symptoms that interfere with daily life. This condition can be caused by a complex combination of factors, such as genetics, family history, trauma, stress, and illness. Depression is one of the most common mental disorders and can have a significant impact on an individual's quality of life.

Depression is not only a source of distress but also a leading cause of death and morbidity. Early identification and treatment of depression can help reduce the burden on caregivers and family members, as well as the associated medical costs. It is essential to seek medical help if you or someone you know is struggling with symptoms of depression.

What You Can Do?

  • Try to keep doing activities you used to enjoy
  • Stay connected to friends and family
  • Exercise regularly, even if it’s just a short walk
  • Reduce time on social media
  • Stick to regular eating and sleeping habits as much as possible
  • Avoid or cut down on alcohol and don’t use illicit drugs
  • Talk to someone you trust about your feelings 
  • Seek help from a healthcare provider


Psychiatrists use treatment to help patients recover from mental disorders and emotional difficulties. These treatments include psychotherapy, medications, and psychosocial interventions. The primary goal of treatment is to alleviate symptoms and optimize the patient's functioning in all areas of life. Psychotherapy or talk therapy involves a talking relationship between a therapist and a patient, and it can be used to treat various mental disorders and emotional difficulties effectively. Psychiatrists prescribe medications after conducting thorough evaluations to correct imbalances in brain chemistry associated with some mental disorders. The medication is used in a similar way to treat high blood pressure or diabetes.

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