Disclaimer: This post mentions self-harm and suicide. If you are affected by this post please seek professional support and advice.
Mental health is something that is close to my heart and is one of my priority causes. I dislike the cuts, I dislike the lack of parity of esteem and I dislike the stigma that surrounds mental health and so on. It’s unfair. Politics is a place that can change all of these things. Mental health needs to be a priority. But I’m not here to argue this point because it is clear. I’d like to tell you the priorities within mental health that I think we should have from personal experience (as always!).
- Prevention. This should be the first and possibly the only step eventually. Prevention is important for many reasons. It keeps children and young people from experiencing stigma and chronic mental health problems and that hopefully saves them from the demons of self harm and suicide. Prevention is the top priority. I could have been prevented from my crisis with a simple debrief after my class.
- Intervention. The next step is intervention. Mental health can decline quickly so it’s important to intervene early. The earlier someone intervenes the better. My decline was so quick that I reached crisis point within a short space of time. I had no intervention. Imagine what would have happened if someone did intervene. Things probably would have been a lot different now.
- Less tension. Parity of esteem is also important. Parity of esteem means mental health must be given priority to physical health. It’s a principle which I fully believe in. Everyone has physical health. Everyone one has mental health. Just because a person does have mental health problems does not mean that anything they feel physically should be attributed to those problems. “I’m feeling run down.” = “It’s your anxiety.” That’s not the right thing to say straight away. It’s important not to jump to mental health problems being the cause because someone has that label. It causes less tension if physical and mental health are on an equal pedestal.
Those are my three top priorities.
There are many more that I could think of but in all honesty I could write a very long list!
What do you think our mental health priorities should be? Let me know in the comments section below or on my social media accounts.