Ad­dress­ing Men­tal Health Is­sues

Palawan Daily News - - Editorial -

Men­tal health is­sues hounded and still hound ev­ery­one and it seems like we un­know­ingly ig­nore the real score be­hind them.

We spoke openly about th­ese is­sues and we pos­i­tively sup­port peo­ple who have been af­flicted by th­ese. In fact, men­tal health ill­nesses are one of the ma­jor is­sues in schools, work­places, and in homes world­wide.

This week, the De­part­ment of Health com­mem­o­rates the Na­tional Men­tal Health Week and the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion spear­heads the cel­e­bra­tion of the World Men­tal Health Day this Oc­to­ber 10. The over­all ob­jec­tive is to raise aware­ness of men­tal health is­sues around the world and mo­bi­liz­ing ef­forts in sup­port of men­tal health.

Due to so­cial and en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues, specif­i­cally dur­ing the tran­si­tion phase from ado­les­cence into adult­hood, con­cerns re­gard­ing changes in schools, trans­fer­ring lo­ca­tions, jobs, and many oth­ers could lead to men­tal health ill­ness. On top of th­ese, in­ten­si­fy­ing use of tech­nol­ogy, specif­i­cally so­cial me­dia have dra­mat­i­cally added pres­sures and thereby af­fect­ing men­tal health con­di­tions of users.

Not only the mil­len­ni­als are af­fected, but all through­out gen­er­a­tions, ev­ery­one has one way or the other been ex­posed to ex­ag­ger­ated in­flu­ences of so­cial me­dia, in spite of the pos­i­tive ben­e­fits they may bring.

Well doc­u­mented re­searches have proved that ef­fects of so­cial me­dia are in­sur­mount­able and pro­longed use of th­ese in­clud­ing the mo­bile phone use may trig­ger more symp­toms of de­pres­sion, anx­i­ety and low self-es­teem.

Last June 2018, Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte signed into law Repub­lic Act No. 11036 also known as the Philip­pine Men­tal Health Law that would safe­guard the rights and wel­fare of per­sons with men­tal health needs.

The law will also pro­vide men­tal health ser­vices down to the grass­roots level in the barangay, in­te­grat­ing needed re­sources to ad­dress psy­chi­atric, psy­choso­cial and neu­ro­logic ser­vices in re­gional, pro­vin­cial and ter­tiary hos­pi­tals and im­prov­ing health care fa­cil­i­ties and pro­mot­ing men­tal health ed­u­ca­tion in schools and work­places.

The ques­tion now is how this law would ef­fec­tively be uti­lized to im­prove what it re­ally meant to ad­dress – the men­tal health needs of every Filipino.

As we com­mem­o­rate the Men­tal Health Week, may we all be re­minded that in every con­cern and prob­lem that we face each day, we all have so­lu­tions to ad­dress them – let’s take refuge to talk to our sig­nif­i­cant oth­ers, to our friends, and col­leagues, and kneel down in prayer.

You can also call the Philip­pine’s First De­pres­sion Hot­line, (02) 804 4673 (hope), mo­bile 0917-558-4673 (HOPE) or toll free 2919 for TM and Globe sub­scribers.

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