The World Health Organization (WHO) highlights mental health as an important health issue through it’s overarching definition of health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity (1)." Mental health can be defined as the position in which a person is at an optimal level of psychological, social and emotional wellbeing (2). It is important to note that these definitions are framed within a health lense and it is necessary to understand that health is influenced by broader social determinants (Buse et al. Health policy is described as the action of the Government to achieve goals within the health sector (10). Through an analysis of policy it is understood that it is influenced …show more content…
If the perception of mental health by policy elites are constructed through a medical model, where individual attributes associated with are seen as the basis of mental health This is because the perceptions of mental health are constructed through a medical model and this means that it is seen as an attribute of the individual and thus is not a policy focus (12). The policy shows a shift to addressing mental health through a social model of health, with an aim to address people’s perceptions of mental illness and the discrimination (3). However, there still remains an aspect of the medical model approach to health within this policy. One of the aims includes encouraging people to lead their own recovery and places emphasis on power of oneself without realizing the realities of the structure of society and its constraints on autonomy …show more content…
The aims of this policy, and other health policies, must not be separated from how actors interact within institutional and social structures. Social structures in the past have rejected mental illness as a health condition, leading to perceptions of madness and actions of abuse, thus resulting in minimal awareness and political action (Foerschner, 2010). There is a now a gradual of shift of acceptance, due to the change in perceptions of what is normal among the various actors in society. The agents in this case, are those who are able to influence changes in the social structure while simultaneosly having push factors for change through the structures themselves. In the case of mental health, the changing attitudes towards the issue have resulted in changes of policy framing, avalibility of services and awareness but these have in turn contributed to the change in societal norms and
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
Over the last two decades, there have been numerous research studies that link mental health as the foundation for all health, social, organizational and educational recovery (Ormston, 2014; McLaren, Belling, Paul, Ford, Kramer, Weaver, Singh, 2013). The American society and the global world continues to witness catastrophic human induced incidences that often times point to the increasing need to pay attention to the declining state of a global mental health community. Evidence links the interconnectedness of the mind and body and attributes health and social problems direct linkage to inattention to mental health (Rubin, 2014). Despite medical, social and technological advances, we continue to lack understanding of the complexities of the human mind which has further alienated our understanding of ourselves.
Continuing budget cuts on mental health care create negative and detrimental impacts on society due to increased improper care for mentally ill, public violence, and overcrowding in jails and emergency rooms. Origins, of mental health as people know it today, began in 1908. The movement initiated was known as “mental hygiene”, which was defined as referring to all things preserving mental health, including maintaining harmonious relation with others, and to participate in constructive changes in one’s social and physical environment (Bertolote 1). As a result of the current spending cuts approaching mental health care, proper treatment has declined drastically. The expanse of improper care to mentally ill peoples has elevated harmful threats of heightened public violence to society.
The discussion of mental health is slowly being brought to the social surface to create a more inclusive society for those dealing with a mental illness. However, those with a mental illness are continuously being affected by stereotypes, prejudice and discrimination by those who simply don’t comprehend the complexity of the human brain (Glaser, G.2017). As more people become mental health activist, they are exposing the plethora of issues surrounding the overall mental and physical stability of those who are negatively affected by the social construct of what it means to be normal.
Mental health is an issue that has been bombarded with unanswered questions and cursed with a social stigma. Throughout history this has created a social divide between mental health issues and the mainstream media. This disparity doesn’t only create a social separation, but a lapse in ethics, making it tolerable to look down on people in the mental health community. Historically, patients have been placed or forced into mental institutions in order to “cure” them of their mental obscurity so that they can function normally in the society, yet for centuries this has proven to be an ongoing struggle for the mental health community. With all of the new advancements in medicine and our ability to cure more physical and mental ailments than
Although about 450 million people in the world currently are suffering from a mental illness, many untreated, the topic still remains taboo in modern society (Mental Health). For years, people with mental illnesses have been shut away or institutionalized, and despite cultural progression in many areas, mental illnesses are still shamed and rarely brought to light outside of the psychiatric community. The many different forms in which mental illness can occur are incredibly prevalent in the world today, and there is a substantial debate about the way that they should be handled. Some people are of the opinion that mental illness is merely a variance in perception and that it either can be fixed through therapy or should not be treated at all, and that treatment can have negative side effects. Other groups of people believe that mental illness is a very serious affliction and should be treated as a disease through a combination of counselling and medication because people suffering from an untreated mental illness are a danger to themselves and society as a whole. This debate is a popular one, discussed everywhere from the medical field to the dinner table, and it is such because of the numerous lives it affects on the well-being of fellow members of society and the economy. People suffering from mental illnesses are afflicted with anything from delusions, to manic periods, to periods of deep emotional darkness due to experiences and brain chemistry (Johnson). Due to the negative effects untreated mental illness has been proven to have on the human well-being and society as a whole, medication should most certainly be seen as a valid and sometimes necessary way to treat those who suffer from mental illnesses.
Mental health patients are stigmatized, even in the most developed nations. Even in these developed nations there is often a lack in proper access and education for underprivileged populations. One way the burden of mental health issues can be measured in Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALY); one DALY is thought of as one year lost of “healthy” life. (WHO, 2016) The sum of these DALYs are described by the World Health Organization as being “The gap in the current health status and an ideal health situation where the entire population lives to an advanced age, free of disease and disability.” (WHO, 2016)
When contemplating the vastness of social policies that could benefit from advocacy for policy change and a thoughtful, responsive audience, there is one topic that situates itself to the forefront of the list of policies needing major reform. This topic is that of health care resources available to those coping with mental health concerns. Though this population faces a variety of challenges such as housing/ homelessness, employment/ training opportunities and educational attainment to suggest a few, each challenge cycles into the next, effecting one another, disturbing how an individual can cope medically. Health care rights for those with mental health concerns bubbled to the public consciousness around with the acknowledgement of “serious
Mental health is a crucial part of our being and has a profound effect on how we live our lives. It determines how we socialize, how we reason, how we deal with our emotions, and how we handle stress; and when impaired and/or neglected, it can have crippling effects on the way in which we function on a cognitive or even physical level. Anyone can become susceptible to mental illness or compromised mental well-being. However, throughout history mental health has often been overlooked by society and mental illness, in particular, has been long stigmatized. This has left many of those affected untreated, poorly treated, destitute, and even outcast from society. Through education and the changing attitudes of society, mental health treatment has
Mental health is defined, according to the Oxford Dictionary, as a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being. The idea of mental health is constantly subject to changes based on social values and beliefs of individual responsibility. Perceptions of the topic change more than any other category of clinically recognized issues. Many people believe mental illnesses are not as severe as individuals claim and can be fixed by just a change of mindset, forcing people affected to adapt without guidance or aid. Society cannot fully grasp what mental health and related illnesses are and the degree of their effects on the day to day life of individuals, which is why people affected face many stigmas. The lack of knowledge
The healthcare system, as a whole, faces many challenges when caring for vulnerable populations. Included in this population are individuals suffering from mental illness. More than 450 million people suffer from a mental health condition (WHO, 2010). Mental health and suicide prevention should be made national priorities. With the lack of resources and public knowledge of this population, healthcare providers are struck with the difficult task of educating the public of the importance of “mental health for overall health.” Public attitudes, and the stigma attached with mental illness, is a major barrier to treatment. Those suffering from mental illness are deprived of the treatment and support they need due to low self-esteem and feelings of hopelessness, derived from the stigma attached by the public. Poor mental health is associated with exclusion from social groups, difficult work environments, unhealthy lifestyles, risk of violence and poor physical health, and violations of human rights (WHO, 2010). Access to quality care is lacking, as well as, early mental health screenings and referrals, which should be made a common practice. More research in this area is critical, along with, improved quality of care for mental health.
The issue of mental health has long been an object of study for society, the psychiatric professions and sociology has similarly had a long tradition of offering theoretical insights into the phenomenon. Why this might be is open for debate and many of the key sociological theories in relation to mental health
Mental health is much more complex than only the absence of a mental illness. There are various definitions of what constitutes mental health. Mental health can be defined as a state in which an individual is able to adjust in the circumstances that they find themselves with the recurrent stresses of everyday living in an acceptable way (Williams. L & Wi...
Mental health can be a sensitive subject to most of society. “In two identical UK public opinion surveys… over 80% [of participants] endors[ed] the statement that ‘most people are embarrassed by mentally ill people’, and about 30% agreeing ‘I am embarrassed by mentally ill persons’” (Byrne 65). People with a mental illness are thought of as including but not limited to: child-like, weak, and even dangerous. This stigma on people with mental illness(es) can have a negative impact on their lives. This stigma can affect their jobs, relationships, treatment, and overall happiness among other things. The stigma surrounding mental illness has been negatively impacting mental health for decades. The public, the media, and people in the mental health
In the medical world, defining mental illness can be as equally diverse as an Olympic opening. Much negativity has gained in popularity and is not only directed towards the patient but also the psychiatrist and other mental health professionals who diagnose and then treat the many different issues that may come with these illnesses. How does one single issue bring together citizens, psychiatrists, and critics at a global level? And how does it tear them all apart, initiating verbal brawls over who is “right,” what is “real,” and if mental illness is not even real – is the stigma “all in our
Defining and measuring quality of life is a notoriously difficult thing to do and is without doubt affected by an individual’s particular experience. Where there has been a belief in the effectiveness of ‘cures’ for mental health problems and conditions, quality of life has not been seen as so important because it has usually been assumed that a good quality of life will replace a poorer quality of life once the cure or treatment successfully addressed but the limitations and unpleasant side effects of many medical treatments for people diagnosed with ‘illnesses’ such as schizophrenia, and the failure to find any entirely effective treatments for dementia, let alone a cure, has brought quality of life issues. Initiatives started mainly by service users, such as the recovery approach and self-management, contain an acknowledgement that, for some people, mental distress, hearing voices, having bizarre beliefs and many other ‘symptoms’ of mental health problems are experiences they may live with on a day-to-day basis for a large part of their life. Having some measure of control over these experiences while also being able to maximize quality of life, by which heavy duty sedative antipsychotics often don’t allow, and therefore crucial, but this is much wider than just a health issue. Sustaining good physical health, having positive significant relationships, being able to participate in the community through work or other programs, having a safe and secure place to live and adequate income, and being free from harassment and judgement can all be as important as managing one’s mental health. “This was recognized perhaps most significantly with the publication of the Labor government’s Social Exclusion Unit (SEU) report on mental health (Social Exclusion Unit, 2004). It was arguably the furthest that government has ever reached in acknowledging the limitations of a more traditional