Summary: mental illness and stigma  


A brief review before taking survey #2 & quiz #2
Just a few of the most important points are below:
Common kinds of severe mental illness are major depressive disorders, bipolar disorders, schizophrenic syndrome disorders, and obsessive-compulsive disorders. There are other types: go to
Frequency: An estimated 1 in 17 Americans ages 18 and older suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder each year. They come from 1 in 5 families. Anyone can have mental illness. It is not the same as mental retardation. You probably already know someone who has mental illness who may not have told you.

About violence:
People expect those with mental illness to be more dangerous than they are. People with mental illness are violent about as often as people in the general population. People with mental illness are more often the targets of crimes. The media often gives a distorted view of mental illness.

Impact of stigma:
The mentally ill suffer the most from stigma. Economically, they lose work and housing opportunitites. But family members and other advocates may 
experience avoidance by others because of stigma. This is " courtesy stigma".
What can you do?
Advocates: educate yourselves and others, speak out, help set up structured public contact to change stereotypes. Advocates can have an effective role in increasing contact with the public. This can create greater awareness.
Consumers: Treatment can be very effective. Find ways to empower yourselves and to reduce your own internalized sense of stigma. Use helpful tools like art, mindfulness practices, professional therapy and other supports. You CAN lead productive and satisfying lives in the community.

Proceed to Attitude Survey #2 - Have your attitudes changed?

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