While stigma may not necessarily be a cause of a person’s mental disorder, it can certainly contribute to the complication and perpetuation of their illness. The effect of stigma goes well beyond just the patient and provides a commentary on society’s overall level of intolerance of those who are considered different from the majority. By recognizing the level of stigma that exists, perhaps we can alter that behavior and gravitate towards a more productive attitude towards mental illness.
“A stigma is a distinguishing mark, establishing a border between a stigmatized person and others attributing negative characteristics to this person.” (Baumann, 2007) There are many different factors that take part in the stigmatization of mental illnesses, however the greatest contributor is the social distance that is created within society between individuals with a mental illness and those without. There are two mind-sets that can increase a person’s willingness to socially distance themselves from the mentally ill. The first mindset is that mentally ill individuals are different and therefore should be separated. The second mindset is that mentally ill individuals are perceived as violent and this creates a need for separation with regards
ts our study of the stigma related to mental health illness. There is a lack of research investigating the portrayal of psychologists, those affected by mental illness and issues of mental health; this lack of research prevents any interventions from being made to protect those at risk. “With the continued portrayals of therapy in the media, it is important to consider how these images may affect attitudes and beliefs that can contribute to help seeking behavior”. (Maier, et al., 2013, p.1). Although there is research supporting that psychological and medical treatment are effective for a broad range of mental illnesses, only around 11% of those who have a diagnosable issue will seek help (Corrigan, 2004). The researchers of this article were interested in how the media portrayal of psychologists and mental illnesses impacts those who should seek therapy, through the formation of stigma. The hypothesis of the article study is formed around the idea that turning to a professional for help is not viewed as a sign of weakness when the psychologists are viewed as trustworthy and have experience.
To many a stigma is a disgraceful flaw, that of a negative presence. In mental health this stigma is overwhelming. Approximately 57.7 million Americans experience a mental health disorder in any given year. (National Alliance on Mental Illness) People in dire need of help are not seeking it. Mental illnesses are going undiagnosed. The mental health stigma is having a negative impact on the proper diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses.
Mental illness is a controversial topic in recent news. From Sandy Hook to the Aurora movie theatre shooting, the effects of mental illness have sparked fierce debate and negative stigma surrounding the issue. Mental illnesses, “patterns of thoughts, feelings, or behaviors that are deviant, distressful, and dysfunctional” (Myers 562), affect 1 in 4 people at some point in their lives ("Stigma and Discrimination"). However, only 59.6% of people with mental illness report receiving treatment, as they are often perceived as “dangerous, unpredictable, responsible for their illness, or generally incompetent” (Corrigan, Druss, and Perlick). As a result, an entire group of citizens is discriminated against for a condition beyond their control. With so much riding on the issue, a question needs to be addressed: to what extent does stigma surrounding mental illness affect the treatment of patients in healthcare and society? To explore the effects of stigma surrounding mental illness, it is essential to understand the issue through historical, sociocultural, economic, and scientific lenses.
Mental Illness, that name conjures up a vast array of frightening images in the minds of the general public and media; an unfair image that is stigmatizing for the sufferer. The stigma is also pervasive in the mental health field, where patients who receive treatment are sometimes treated unfairly by the practitioners, who are supposed to help them in the first place. This is what my paper will discuss, the effects of stigma and labeling on patients and their families. I have culled many sources from scholarly papers, that back up my claim. I will describe what I thought of about the articles and how they pertain to the main points I am trying to make.
Stigma is a destructive shadow which follows mental health, inevitably impacting on the process of recovery. In Australia, statistics show that one in five individuals experience mental illness, of those 74% (SANE Australia,2013) reported being affected by stigma. With such statistics, it is crucial to understand the recovery process in mental health and the extent to which stigma influences on this process.
Most people with mental health illness feels diminished, devalued, and fearful because of the prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behaviours that society held towards them. The stigma associated with mental health illness often marginalized and disenfranchises the affected individuals and families in the society, which means that they “may experience discrimination in areas of health care, employment, education, justice, and housing”(1). The feeling of fear to be discriminated against limited the affected individuals and families to seek help and access benefit, which leading to poverty and unhealthy coping strategies such as substance abuse.
The Affordable Care Act created a paradigm shift for public health in the US. Government in communities across the country have made significant progress in combating AIDS, preventing cancer, reducing tobacco use, and increasing vaccinations. However, one issue remains sorely overlooked, the state of mental health in the US. According to the National Institute of Mental Health 43.7 million Americans have a mental illness in any given year and only a third of those with a mental illness receive care. Although, the Affordable Care Act increased financial access to mental healthcare, many barriers still exist. Data from the Department of Health and Human Services shows that 55% of US counties lack a single mental health professional. Stigmas and attitudes towards mental health issues prevent people from pursuing help, as 71% of individuals in a Psychiatric Services study believed they could solve their mental health issues on their own. The American Journal of Psychiatry goes on to point out that all of these factors cost the US $193.2 billion in lost earnings per
There are still many societies that view people with mental health problems as threatening or unstable. These attitudes often cause stigma and discrimination towards people with mental health problems. Many people who make these assumptions about people with mental health problems are often uneducated. Social workers today educate and help families that may may be struggling with this disease. Mental health disorders affect different people and are more prone to exist in areas where help can be found or is not affordable. Mental health disorders are often frowned upon by people because they do not understand it. Many people live throughout their lives not getting the help they need because of stigma on this topic. As a society Mental health diseases should be identified as problem that can be fixed and not be an identification for the person it is affecting.
Mental health disorders affect just about every single person in the world. These disorders come in many forms and severities. A couple of these disorders are depression, anxiety, eating disorders, posttraumatic stress disorder, and many more. In the United States alone 43.8 million, 1 in 5, adults suffer from a form of a mental health disorder. About 21.4%, or 1 in 5 juveniles ages 13-18, suffer from mental health disorders. Of people in our country who are homeless or incarcerated, majority of them suffer from at least one form of a mental health disorder. These disorders can also lead to suicide. Suicide is a terrible act that has risen in prevalence recently. Mental health issues are
Stigma can be expressed in various term, it can be a brand, labelling or identification. It is a differentiation of a person resulting to a boundary between “us” and “them” (Link and Phelan 2001). These affect consumers in a way they are discriminated and treated differently because they have mental illness. The effect of stigma can take away the rights of consumers who are suffering from mental illness causing social dilemmas (SANE Australia 2013). A survey shows 74% of consumers experience stigma from school, work, and social activities. Consumers had only one feedback, to reduce stigma so they can go with their life peacefully and engage in normal social activities without discrimination (SANE Australia 2006). It is
Mental illness is a term which is used when a persons mind is affected in some way by a group of illnesses (Ministry of Health [MOH], 2012).