Are the Words Mental Illness, Mentally Ill Stigmatizing?

HealthyPlace Mental Health Newsletter

Here's what's happening on the HealthyPlace site this week:

Are the Words Mental Illness, Mentally Ill Stigmatizing?

How do you feel when you hear the words "mental illness" and "mentally ill"? Some living with a mental health disorder accept the terms without any problem at all. They feel it aptly describes what they are dealing with.

On our Facebook page, Elisa says:

"I personally do not take offense. I take offense at the fact it is not talked about it in general society more. No matter what you call it, if people continue to be uneducated. it does not matter the term."

There is even a subgroup that uses mental illness, mentally ill and crazy as words of empowerment - in a similar vein as you might hear hip-hop artists and rappers use the "N" word.

On the other hand, there are others who feel branded, in a negative sense, when they are described as having a mental illness or being mentally ill. To them, the words evoke feelings of being excluded and discriminated against. After all, there's a long history of stigma and discrimination associated with those terms.

"Mentally ill has to go. Would you ever say....oncologically ill? Diabeticly ill?" ~ Beth

Are the Words Mental Illness, Mentally Ill Stigmatizing?In fact, it's interesting to note that the American Psychiatric Association which produces the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual) uses the term "mental disorders" vs. "mental illness".

So, where do you fall? Click our Facebook link, directly below this, to express your viewpoint.

Related Information on Terms Mental Illness and Mentally Ill

Your Thoughts

Today's Question: How do you feel about the use of the terms "mentally ill" and "mental illness"? We invite you to participate by commenting and sharing your feelings, experiences and knowledge on the HealthyPlace Facebook page.

Help Spread Awareness of Mental Illness

Get Our Mental Health Blog Widget

Over 315 sites and blogs are helping spread awareness of mental illness. How about putting our mental health blogs widget on your website, blog or social page? The latest HealthyPlace blog headlines appear as soon as the articles are posted on our site. Just click "Get Widget" at the bottom of the widget, grab the embed code and paste it into your page. You'll also see embed links for Wordpress, Blogger, Linkedin and other social sites there.

As a bonus, put the blogs widget on your site or blog, email us (info AT with a page link where it appears, and we'll give a shoutout to your site, blog, or social site on our Facebook and Twitter pages.


Share our Stories

At the top and bottom of all our stories, you'll find social share buttons for Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest and other social sites. If you find a particular story, video, psychological test or other HealthyPlace feature helpful, there's a good chance others in need will too. Please share.

We also get many inquiries about our linking policy. If you have a website or blog, you can link to any page on the HealthyPlace website without asking us beforehand.

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Most Popular HealthyPlace Articles Shared by Facebook Fans

Here are the top 3 mental health articles HealthyPlace Facebook fans are recommending you read:

  1. Where is Mental Illness Education?
  2. When Friends Don’t Accept Your Mental Illness
  3. Eating Disorder Health Problems and Complications

If you're not already, I hope you'll join us/like us on Facebook too. There are a lot of wonderful, supportive people there.


Mental Health Experiences

Share your thoughts/experiences with any mental health subject, or respond to other people's audio posts, by calling our toll-free number (1-888-883-8045).

You can listen to what other people are saying by clicking on the gray title bars inside the widgets located on the "Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences" homepage, the HealthyPlace homepage, and the HealthyPlace Support Network homepage.

If you have any questions, write us at: info AT


From the HealthyPlace Mental Health Blogs

On all our blogs, your comments and observations are welcomed.

Feel free to share your thoughts and comments at the bottom of any blog post. And visit the mental health blogs homepage for the latest posts.


Stand Up for Mental Health

Thousands Have Joined the Stand Up for Mental Health Campaign

But we still need you. Let others know there's no shame in having depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, trichotillomania, OCD, ADHD, schizophrenia or any other mental illness.

Join the Stand Up for Mental Health campaign. Put a button on your website or blog (buttons for family members, parents, mental health professionals and organizations too). We also have covers for Facebook, Twitter and Google+.


Coaching The Preschooler With ADHD

Having a very young child with ADHD and no prior experience parenting one, leaves many parents searching for answers on what to do. Not to worry. Our Parenting Coach, Dr. Steven Richfield, offers parents some guidance on how to manage behaviors of ADHD kids.

Latest Mental Health News

These stories and more are featured on our mental health news page:

  • Why Smokers Still Smoke
  • The Psychology of an Irish Meltdown
  • Danger! This Mission to Mars Could Bore You to Death!
  • Why Men Need Women
  • The Worry Cure. How To Cope With Uncertainty.
  • Employee of the Month. Pump Up Your Work Day.
  • Individual Response Determines Psychosis Impact
  • The Recession Hits Those with Mental Health Problems Harder
  • New Guide on Suicide Prevention for Mental Health Workers
  • Accurate Blood Test for Alzheimer's on The Horizon
  • Drug Misuse Boost to Cognition Refuted in Schizophrenia
  • Cognitive Tests Predict Employability in Bipolar Disorder

That's it for now. If you know of anyone who can benefit from this newsletter or the site, I hope you'll pass this onto them. You can also share the newsletter on any social network (like facebook, stumbleupon, or digg) you belong to by clicking the links below. For updates throughout the week:

back to: Mental-Health Newsletter Index

APA Reference
Staff, H. (2013, August 5). Are the Words Mental Illness, Mentally Ill Stigmatizing?, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 13 from

Last Updated: September 4, 2014

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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