WHAT IS STIGMA?
Families are also affected by stigma, leading to a lack of support. For mental health professionals, stigma means that they themselves are seen as abnormal, corrupt or evil, and psychiatric treatments are often viewed with suspicion and horror.
Some groups are subjected to multiple types of stigma and discrimination at the same time, such as people with an intellectual disability or those from a cultural or ethnic minority.
Stigma around mental illness exists in the world because of a lack of understanding and knowledge, but many are eager and curious to learn about mental health, especially our youth!
Here are a few of the most common misconceptions about mental health problems:
- Mentally ill people have a weak character.
- Mentally ill people are potentially dangerous.
- People with mental illness should just “snap out of it.”
- Mentally ill people are violent.
What About the Other Stigmas?
WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF STIGMA?
HOW DO I MAINTAIN A STIGMA-FREE ZONE?
- Actively learn and share the facts about stigma, particularly mental illness;
- Change attitudes and perceptions about those who are affected by stigma;
- Talk openly about personal experiences of stigma to encourage empathy;
- Initiate positive action when friends, family, or the media displays false beliefs and negative stereotypes;
- Offer support to people who are affected by bullying and discrimination; and
- Never label or judge people, ensuring to treat all with respect and dignity.
FAST FACTS ABOUT STIGMA
We can create AWARENESS of the stigmas that exist in society to help everyone develop an UNDERSTANDING of the challenges that numerous people face in their lives. Let’s work together to foster ACCEPTANCE of ourselves and others.