Myths About Mental Illnesses
"Psychiatric disorders are not true medical illnesses like heart disease and diabetes."
False. There are genetic and biological causes proven by research.
"People with mental illness are usually dangerous and violent."
False. Statistic show that the incidence of violence, compared to the general population, is almost the same.
"Mental illness is the result of a weakness or character flaw, and people can just 'snap out of it' if they would just try."
False. It is the result of changes in brain chemistry.
"Addiction is a lifestyle choice and shows a lack of willpower."
False. It is a disease that results from brain chemistry and genetics and has nothing to do with being a bad person.
"People with mental illness are lazy, can't hold a job, and are failures."
Wrong again. Fatigue and lack of motivation are symptoms, just like when you have a hard time getting up while sick with the flu. With proper treatment, people with mental illness can work in any field. You cannot look at a person and tell that they have a mental illness. Stigma about mental illness is where society fails people with mental illness.
Mental Illness Facts:
Mental illnesses include such disorders as schizophrenia, schizo-affective disorder, bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic and other severe anxiety disorders, autism and pervasive development disorders, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, borderline personality disorder, and other severe and persistent mental illnesses that affect the brain.
These disorders can profoundly disrupt a person's thinking, feelings, moods, ability to relate to others, and capacity for coping with the demands of life.
Mental illnesses can affect persons of any age, race, religion, or income. Mental illnesses are not the result of personal weakness, lack of character, or poor upbringing.
Mental illnesses are treatable. Most people with a serious mental illness need medication to help control symptoms, but also rely on supportive counseling, self-help groups, assistance with housing, vocational rehabilitation, income assistance and other community services in order to achieve their highest level of recovery.
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