Do You Have A Mental Illness, And Do You Know What To Do? [Opinion]


The new Lancet report is pretty stunning stuff. The Guardian reports that every country in the world is facing what amounts to a mental health crisis. The report was put together by 28 experts from around the world, and they found that mental health is a huge problem all over the globe.

Mental illness is on the rise everywhere, and in the past 25 years it has increased rapidly. WHO statistics show that hundreds of millions of people suffer from depression, and tens of millions have bipolar disorder, according to Physician’s Weekly.

The federal government’s mental health website is slim on resources and information. And despite strides that have been made in the mental health arena, such as celebrities who have stepped forward to help end the demonizing of mental illness, most people have no idea if they need help or how to get help if they do.

People who think they could be suffering from mental illness can obtain an online screening through a number of websites, including Mental Health America. This is by no means a comprehensive diagnostic tool and should not be substituted for an actual diagnosis, but this can help people find out if they have the warning signs and symptoms associated with the most common mental illnesses.

There is no reason to be afraid or to avoid addressing mental health problems. Studies show that one in four people experience a mental health condition at some point in their lives. That’s 25 percent of the population.

A recent article from The Guardian shows that 800,000 people commit suicide every year. That’s more people than the number of residents currently living in Washington, D.C., the nation’s capital. That’s almost 1 million lives lost on an annual basis.


Bad things happen when mental illness is not addressed. So anyone who feels they may be at risk for mental illness should get a screening, and then seek out help.

In the modern era, there are more options than ever for addressing mental illnesses. Counseling is available in person, over the phone, and online. Peer support chat groups and chat rooms are available on a number of websites. There are multiple apps that can provide live support for people who are struggling, and there are dozens of hotlines and chat support websites that have people standing by waiting to help those who are in crisis. There are lots of support groups available, both physical and online.

And if you have health insurance, you don’t have to seek out a psychiatrist or a psychologist to get help. Start by talking to your primary care physician, and they can help you figure out what to do next.

The most important thing to know is this: mental illness is treatable. If you had a broken arm, you’d do something about it. Right?