cstnprapp15.centerstone.lan

Mental Health Mythbusting

Counselor comforting client during visit to outpatient clinic

In the more than seven decades since the first observance of Mental Health Month, stigma surrounding mental health issues has greatly reduced; however, misconceptions and misinformation still exist. It is vital for the one in five Americans who live with mental health conditions that we debunk mental health myths that persist.

I asked some of our mental health professionals at Centerstone what myths still need busting regarding mental health care matters. Here are three myths and the truth about each.

MYTH: The way to fix a mental health issue is to “snap out of it.”

TRUTH: Telling someone to “snap out” of a mental health condition is like telling a diabetic to “snap out” of diabetes. Mental illness may involve genetics, brain chemistry, life experiences such as trauma or abuse, as well as other significant social factors. It’s true that people with mental health problems can improve and some experience full recovery, but it isn’t a snap. Improvements often require and are achieved through talk therapy, prescribed medicine and other lifestyle changes, which can take time.

MYTH: People with mental health challenges are dangerous and often criminals.

TRUTH: Those with a major mental illness are actually more likely to be victims of crime rather than perpetrators. Because they often also struggle with issues of poverty, transient living conditions and substance use, their vulnerability is increased. While the news media may regularly highlight crimes committed by someone with a mental illness, research suggests that is rarely the case with criminal violence.

MYTH: Suicide is not preventable.

TRUTH: Suicide is preventable. Eight out of ten people who die of suicide give definite clues to their intentions, although some may be nonverbal or difficult to detect. Warning signs – such as anxiety, agitation or trouble sleeping; withdrawal from friends, family and regular activities; and/or substance use – often indicate someone is experiencing thoughts of suicide. Mental Health First Aid classes are available to educate the public about how to recognize symptoms in a person and guide them to crisis care. On the clinical level, many health care providers, including Centerstone, use risk assessment methods at each appointment to determine if an individual needs an active safety plan put in place to avoid self-harm. Resulting data shows that many lives are saved.

No one has to weather a mental health condition alone. There is help, hope and healing for all with mental illness and addiction, which is why it’s important we bust the myths and spread the truth during Mental Health Month and beyond.

Matt Hardy, PhD, is a Chief Operating Officer at Centerstone overseeing its integrated behavioral and physical health care services in the northern area of Middle Tennessee.

Contact Us

Location Finder



Related Posts

Mental Health Challenges and Tips for Older Adults

Physical Health
Health & Wellness
For many, one of the perks of reaching the third age (ages 65 to 84) is pursuing retirement and ...

Mental Health Physical Health featured

What is Dissociation?

Mental Health
Health & Wellness
Dissociation is the separation from sensory experiences, sense of self, or personal history resulting in feelings of being disconnected, ...

Mental Health trauma Dissociation

Mental Health Challenges in the LGBTQ+ Community

Physical Health
Health & Wellness
Those in the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and more) community are often met with significant barriers when ...

Mental Health Physical Health LGBTQ+

Talking to Children about Divorce

Family Matters
Health & Wellness
Families don’t always stay together as originally planned, and divorce becomes a challenging reality. How does one address this ...

Family Matters Mental Health Children & Teens

Mental Health Benefits of Pet Ownership

Pets
Health & Wellness
After a bad day at school or work, many people look forward to being home with someone or something they ...

Physical Health emotional health Pet Ownership

Call Now

photo of
Centerstone
helpnow@centerstone.org
44 Vantage Way
Nashville, TN, 37228 United States
877-467-3123