Monday, September 20, 2010

Beliefs or Belief

There are two kinds of beliefs. One is the conviction or faith one has in one self or some other agent; the other is an opinion, of someone or a subject. Though many of us know about the physical diseases that beset us, through the media or through public association, we know very little about the mental disorders of mental health; of which the concepts of mental health have gone barely noticed. Many people cannot see what disorders exist mentally, nor do they know the different types of mental disorders that exist, hence the common individual of the public have different opinions than the experts about the causes of mental distress and such the treatment there of.
There are different attitudes which keep recognition of the disorders from being spontaneous and accurate; and most of the information on Mental Health is misleading when it is discussed within the public especially in the media. So what can we believe as consumers, as clients?
Like any person who is of ill health, you find a doctor who can diagnose the problem. You research the diagnosis and get a 2nd or even 3rd opinion, or you go by the diagnosis of your doctor and accept the treatment he or she prescribes.
In the late 1990’s a term was introduced into the world of psychiatry, “Mental Health Literacy” and has been defined as, “knowledge and beliefs about mental disorders which aid their recognition, management and prevention”. What does this mean? In short, it is about the knowledge, and beliefs of the causes, self help, professional help available and the attitudes which lend to the recognition and seeking of mental health help and information. This came about as mental health disorders had arisen sharply in our lifetime which means many people will develop a mental disorder or will have associations with someone who has one.
Knowledge in helping others is related to mental health literacy. There is self help; people seeking support from family or friends, finding a connection with others through taking up new activities, and hobbies as well as physical exercise. All of this is building up ones beliefs not only through the public yet also through family and friends, and this is not only building up beliefs, yet strength as well to endure the distress by those who are unfortunate. What people believe in, they do so by association and word, what we accept, we do so by trust and we build our own views; through use of medication and treatment and through reflection whether we are a Third World citizen or of the Western culture.
Excerpts by A.F. Jorm “Mental Health Literacy”
by Donald Sammons

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