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Mythbusters

Fact:

With the right kind of help, treated appropriately and early, most people recover fully and have no further episodes of illness. For others, mental illness may recur throughout their lives and require ongoing treatment. This is the same as many physical illnesses, such as diabetes and heart disease. Like these other long-term health conditions, mental illness can be managed so that individuals live life to the fullest.

Although some people become disabled as a result of ongoing mental illness, many who experience even very major episodes of illness live full and productive lives.

Fact:

A mental illness is not a character flaw. It is caused by a complex interplay of genetic, biological, social and environmental factors. Seeking and accepting help is a sign of resilience and strength.

Fact:

This false perception underlies some of the most damaging stereotypes for people with mental illness. People with a mental illness are seldom dangerous. Even people with the most severe mental illness, whose symptoms may cause them to act in bizarre or unusual ways, are rarely dangerous.

Fact:

They are illnesses just like any other, such as heart disease, diabetes, and asthma. Yet the traditions of sympathy, support, and flowers given to people with physical illnesses are often denied to those with a mental illness.

Fact:

A mental illness is not caused by personal weakness and is not ‘cured’ by personal strength.

Fact:

Most people with a mental illness recover quickly and do not need hospital care. Others may have short admissions to hospital for treatment. Only a very small number of people with mental illness (less than 1 in 1000) need hospital care. Improvements in treatment over recent decades mean that most people live in their communities, and there is no need for the confinement and isolation that was commonly used in the past.

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Ministry of Health
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Sosun Magu, 20184
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