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Help Stop Mental Health Stigma: Arm Yourself With Knowledge

Help Stop Mental Health Stigma: Arm Yourself With Knowledge

stigma can be stopped when you arm yourself with knowledge and fight the myths at every turn

It is important to arm yourself with knowledge in any way you can so you can better fight mental health stigma whenever you encounter it. You may be seeking this knowledge for many reasons. For yourself, for a family member, or for people you work around or interact with who have a mental illness. By seeking knowledge on mental health, you can stop stigmatizing beliefs on the spot when you encounter people who have misunderstandings or believe mental health myths.

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Discussing Mental Health Stigma With Children Is Important

Discussing Mental Health Stigma With Children Is Important

More and more, people push for discussing mental health with children and to include education on mental health, mental wellness, and mental illness in the classroom and outside of it (Where is Mental Illness Education?). I wholeheartedly agree with this idea because it has the potential help children recognize mental health trouble in themselves and in others, and to know there is something that can be done if they’re struggling. Another big reason for the push is the aim to reduce stigma, but I can’t think of an instance in which it was said there should be lessons about stigma, too. Discussing mental health stigma is just as important as talking about mental illness.

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How Talking About Willpower Contributes to Mental Health Stigma

How Talking About Willpower Contributes to Mental Health Stigma

While people generally don’t mean any hard by saying “stay strong” to those with mental illness but talking about willpower can contribute to mental health stigma. Implying being strong enough lets you overcome mental illness can be problematic (Mental Illness Can Zap Motivation). Find out why the concept of willpower can contribute to Mental Health Stigma.

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Make a Difference: Stop Using Stigmatizing Words

Make a Difference: Stop Using Stigmatizing Words

We all use stigmatizing words; some can’t seem to stop, some don’t know they are hurtful. The truth is, we can make a difference in our world if we stop using stigmatizing words (Language Can Stigmatize People with Mental Illness). We want to be able to talk about mental health and reduce stigma in the media, at home, and in the workplace. To increase awareness and to do this, we must stop using stigmatizing words and insist others do the same.

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Mental Health Stigma Affects Moods and Relationships

Mental Health Stigma Affects Moods and Relationships

When people have wrong ideas about those who suffer from a mental health issue, moods and relationships can be affected by this mental health stigma (Misunderstandings Can Contribute to Mental Health Stigma). Moods are affected by mental health stigma because when you allow these false ideas to affect you, quite often you will have poor self-esteem, which can lead to other effects such as isolation. Isolation is one of the worst parts of mental illness and when you stay inside and shut yourself off from the world, the first thing to be affected is relationships which can then lead to or add to low moods. 

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Why Media Portrayals of Mental Illness Are Important

Why Media Portrayals of Mental Illness Are Important

Careful media portrayals of mental illness are more important than they may seem. While it’s true that not everyone feels the influence of media, there are people that do, and it is those people that we have to keep an eye out for. People might be influenced regarding their hair style or the latest Twitter hashtag, but the media portrayal of mental illness may influence them as well.

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Dos for Fighting Mental Health Stigma

Dos for Fighting Mental Health Stigma

Fighting mental health stigma dos are important. When talking about mental health stigma and offering some advice for combating it, we often talk in terms of what not to do. Don’t shame someone. Don’t say these things. Don’t believe the lies that stigma tells us. Recently there was a comment left on one of HealthyPlace’s blogs pointing this fact out and asking for some dos in fighting mental health stigma instead. Here are some of those dos, but keep in mind there are tons of other things you can do to fight mental health stigma.

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Build a Community Where Mental Health Stigma Doesn’t Exist

Build a Community Where Mental Health Stigma Doesn’t Exist

Stigma harms those with mental health issues, but it is possible to build a community where mental health stigma doesn’t exist. Building a community of stigma-free living takes time and effort, but when stigma in your community doesn’t exist, you will have a much more rewarding and stress-free life.

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How to Combat Mental Health Stigma with Trending Posts

How to Combat Mental Health Stigma with Trending Posts

You can use trending social media posts to combat mental health stigma. Every once in a while, a “copy and paste this post” about mental illness will make its way across social media (Use Social Media to Combat Mental Health Stigma). These posts are typically short or a couple paragraphs long, which is likely how they gain traction since short and sweet is easier to deal with and then move on from. That being said, these trending posts about mental health usually don’t do much to combat stigma.

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Don’t Stigmatize Emotional Reactions to the US Election

Don’t Stigmatize Emotional Reactions to the US Election

Watching social media on the US election night last week left me with a feeling of dread and it’s important not to stigmatize that type of emotional reaction to the US election. The heaviness of people’s words and the fears they expressed post after post was palpable through the screen. I hadn’t searched for the negative; I simply clicked on the trending hashtags #USElection2016 and #ElectionNight. The posts the next morning after Donald Trump’s victory was much the same. But US election emotions shouldn’t be stigmatized.

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