Seeing a Psychotherapist can Help if the Stigma of Mental Health Problems Increases Isolation
The mental health charity, Mind, has reported that 17% of Britons suffer from some depression or anxiety. The World Health Organisation has estimated that by 2020 depression will become the second most important cause of disability in the world.
However, despite these revealing statistics, so many people are still reluctant to share their problems with friends or work colleagues?
Sophie Corlett, Mind’s director of external relations said “People find it very difficult to know what they are supposed to do when a friend or colleague says they have a mental health problem”. She goes on to say, “They see it as mysterious, different and requiring a specialised response but actually all people often need is a friendly face, people around them, carrying on making suggestions of things to do and being included. There is also a stigma that people with mental health problems are less capable, less interesting, less intelligent and even dangerous.”
Many sufferers may fear broaching the issue of their depression for fear of this reaction, or judgement from people close to them and society at a whole. Although society is more accepting of mental healh issues now than at any other time, there is still a stigma attached and a fear of the label, ‘depression’, may lead sufferers to try and cope alone, feeling more and more isolated. The lack of an obvious disability may also allow sufferers to believe they can keep their issues secret.
To compound this, Corlett adds that depression or anxiety means they “have very low self-esteem, feel that no one wants to hear and that they are unlikely to get better anyway”.
Despite a more open attitude to mental health conditions, the cost of ignoring it has an effect upon both the employer and the individual employee. Andy Bell, of the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health, has estimated that the cost of ignoring mental distress at work is £1,000 for every employee in UK business, whilst Time to Change, a coalition of charities campaigning to end mental health discrimination, says that talking about one’s distress can help the individual keep their job.
Depression and anxiety can have many knock on effects to one’s life. Talking about problems and exploring their origins, looking at repeating thought processes and behaviour patterns with a qualified psychotherapist can help you get a grasp of what is happening, and why, enabling you to gain confidence in order to make the changes you need.
The psychotherapists at The Cavendish Psychotherapy Practice on London’s Harley Street can help explore your issues with you in a confidential and non judgemental environment.