World Mental Health Day: Mental health precedes physical care
By Lalit Garg
World Mental Health Day is celebrated every year on 10 October all over the world. The purpose of celebrating this day is to bring awareness among people about mental health. The aim of this day is to help the human community achieve good health and long life by giving them a stress-free life. There has been a huge increase in mental diseases due to scientific progress, industrial revolution, increasing population, rapid urbanization, inflation, unemployment and the stressful environment of modern life. This is a matter of concern for the entire world. Today, every sphere of life is plagued by problems, due to the hectic and stressful life. Anxiety and pressure are being felt everywhere, be it work, relationships and heavy expectations from life. Every person is forced to live a life of doubt, conflict and mental turmoil. In this milieu, maintaining good mental health has become tricky in these increasingly complex circumstances
This year’s theme is ‘Mental health is a universal human right.’ When mental disorders appear as physical illnesses, they are known as psychosomatic diseases. Today, it is expected everywhere that a healthy mindset should be created. Man’s thoughts and behaviour should be changed. Every person suffers from mental diseases and disorders more than he suffers from physical diseases. It is said in the scriptures – ‘Worry is like a funeral pyre’. This proves to be absolutely true considering the serious diseases that arise from daily stress, which eventually can lead to death. The biggest and continuously emerging problem in today’s fast-paced lifestyle, where every minute is counted, is that mental stress, which has permanently spread its foot in everyone’s life, is badly affecting an individual’s mental health. Mental stress starting from personal life has become a serious problem for the whole world, which is capable of giving rise to many other serious problems. This is why, to avoid this and achieve mental peace, people are adopting yoga, meditation, spirituality and many other methods in their lives.
A new analysis from the World Health Organization shows nearly one billion persons worldwide suffer from some or other form of mental disorder. According to a study, more than five crore people in India alone are psychopaths. A psychological report reveals that one and a half per cent of the population suffers from mental illnesses throughout their life. Ten per cent of people are affected by this disease at some point in their life. The summary of the latest discoveries of psychologists is that every second person in the entire world is mentally ill. Some psychologists believe that knowingly or unknowingly every person always suffers from some or the other mental illness. Anxiety, nervousness, lack of sleep, despair, irritability, negative thinking – all these are the gross symptoms of mental illness.
This is the beginning of mental paralysis. Due to this, the brain becomes frustrated. Intellectual stimulation gets blocked. As soon as the brain machinery gets jammed, the body system also becomes disorganized and inactive. An unbalanced mind itself becomes sick and also makes the body sick.
It is also very well known that stress is not the solution to any problem, but gives birth to many other problems. For example, stress makes a person suffer from excessive headaches, migraines, high or low blood pressure and heart-related problems. Mental stress is the main cause of heart- attacks in the world. This irritates your nature and also steals your happiness and smile. To avoid this, it has become not only necessary but mandatory to remove unnecessary causes of stress from life. For happiness, peace and satisfaction in life, mental health is as important as a healthy body.
At present many branches of medical science have developed, one of them is mental health science. Through this, efforts are made to protect patients from mental diseases and to create a healthy mindset. A person with a healthy mind always experiences self-satisfaction, perfection and happiness, which leads to balanced development of personality. A person with a balanced mind can also adjust to the obstacles/difficulties that come in life. By mental health, we mean peace of mind and happiness. A person who adjusts to the circumstances reaches his goal. A maladjusted person fails at every step. Then he gets attacked by despair and frustration and, as a result, he falls victim to many types of mental diseases.
India has a very large population of youth, averaging about thirty per cent. Prevention and management of mental distress among adolescents and adults should begin at an early age by increasing awareness and understanding of the early warning signs and symptoms of mental illness. The National Mental Health Policy was announced on 10 October 2014. Considering the seriousness of mental illnesses, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken the initiative to launch many multi-dimensional programs. Adolescence and early adulthood are the life- stages, when many changes occur, for example changing schools, leaving home and starting college, university or a new job. These are exciting times for many people and in some cases, it can also be a time of stress, depression, frustration and doubt. The increased use of online technologies with many benefits has also brought additional pressures for people in this age group, with half of all mental illnesses beginning by the age of fourteen, with suicide the second leading cause of death among fifteen to twenty-nine-year-old persons. Harmful use of alcohol and drugs is also a major problem among teenagers that can lead to risky behaviour, such as– unsafe sex or dangerous driving.
Generally, everyone is concerned about physical health; however, very little attention is paid to mental health. Health depends on the quality of thoughts, not on medicines. There is a deep connection between the brain and the body. The structure of the brain is very complex and mysterious. The body is controlled by the brain. Thoughts affect body systems. Professor Gates writes, “Corrupted emotions contaminate the blood. As soon as bad thoughts enter the mind, the secretions of the glands change. Their construction also stops. The poisonous effect of bad thoughts poisons the blood. This makes the body sick. The capabilities of the brain start decreasing and it becomes weak. A person who always lives in a dirty environment and is surrounded by bad thoughts loses physical health and personality influence. Good thoughts develop mental happiness and excitement increases. This not only makes a difference in the person’s behaviour but also makes his behaviour dignified. Therefore, for personality development, it is expected that mental balance and positive thinking should be developed continuously. Success in this direction can be achieved through targeted practice and experimentation. Since the whole world is becoming aware of the importance of mental health, and is trying to stay away from stress, then you should also take a pledge that you will not take excessive stress in any problem; because it can also give rise to many types of physical problems. Stress makes problems more complicated, rather than solving them, so it is better to solve them tactfully. Why should we forget to smile in times of trouble? Keep laughing, keep smiling and keep worrying habits at a distance.
Kashmir Images is an English language daily newspaper published from Srinagar (J&K), India. The newspaper is one of the largest circulated English dailies of Kashmir and its hard copies reach every nook and corner of Kashmir Valley besides Jammu and Ladakh region.