Join the conversation about mental illness

Join the conversation about mental illness

One in four Americans has been diagnosed with a mental illness according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Yet nine out of 10 people with a mental illness feel stigmatized and discriminated against.

To help end this stigma and encourage a more open conversation about mental illness, Time to Change, a British organization is encouraging people to have a conversation about mental health. So far, over 79,000 have pledged to end the stigma on mental health. February 5, was chosen as “Time to Talk Day,” where people were asked to take five minutes out of their day to talk about mental health.

Participants used social media to join in the conversation. Some simply Tweeted to raise awareness for the day while others created YouTube videos to share their stories. Over 20 days’ worth of conversations were had by people worldwide.

“I think it can be very helpful for people struggling with mental illness to connect with others and social media is one option,” says Judy Petruska, domestic violence coordinator at Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, Ill. “People can ask questions, receive support from others with a shared experience or diagnosis, and get connected to helpful resources.

Although Time to Talk Day has passed, all are still invited to join the conversation on social media using #TimetoTalk. Petruska reminds people who choose to share their stories online to use caution.

“People have to be mindful about privacy, careful about the information they choose to post and consider everything permanent. Don’t post anything when you are angry or sleep deprived and take a break if you are spending too much time on these sites,” she says.

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health enews Staff
health enews Staff

health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Aurora Health sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.