I think one of the most surprising things about psychotherapy is that, despite the many, many strides in mental health awareness, more than a fair few people are still loathe to admit that they just might have mental health issues. But, guess what? Having a mental health issue is completely normal.
According the World Health Organisation (WHO), one in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.
If people didn’t get physically ill, they wouldn’t need surgeons and doctors and, if people didn’t get mentally ill, they wouldn’t need psychiatrists and psychotherapists. But, they do.
So, treatments are available, but nearly two-thirds of people suffering with a mental disorder never seek help from a healthcare professional. Stigma, discrimination and neglect all play their part. Hence, the continual need for education and awareness.
One thing that needs reinforcing time and time again is that having a mental health issue doesn’t mean you are ‘mental.’
Going to see a counsellor or psychotherapist when you’re feeling sad or overwhelmed or about to go over the edge should be, and needs to be seen as, normal. As normal as going to the doctor is when you have an ache, a pain, or a fever.
In fact, even if you don’t feel like you are suffering from anything, a regular check-up with a mental health practitioner is no bad thing. You get your teeth and eyes looked at on a regular basis, after all. Plus, you local GP surgery will always call you in for a free check up when you hit certain age-related milestones.
Mental health issues are normal. Mental health treatment in the form of counselling and therapy is nothing short of practical.
Why not make it part of your routine, starting today?