Docs warn of rising mental instability in India

Docs warn of rising mental instability in India
Highlights

World Mental Health Day was celebrated at the Sweekaar Academy of Rehabilitation Sciences on Friday. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates, currently 20 million Indians are suffering from mental health problems and about 20 per cent of India’s population is predicted to develop some kind of mental health issue by 2020.

20 per cent of India’s population is predicted to develop some kind of mental health issue by 2020

World Mental Health Day was celebrated at the Sweekaar Academy of Rehabilitation Sciences on Friday.

 P Hanumantha Rao

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates, currently 20 million Indians are suffering from mental health problems and about 20 per cent of India’s population is predicted to develop some kind of mental health issue by 2020.

P Hanumantha Rao, founder and chairman of the Sweekar Academy of Rehabilitation Sciences, leading pshycologist and pediatrician, said, “We want a nation that upholds the human rights of mental patients. Also, it will be an occasion to generate awareness against stigmatisation of people with mental illnesses and highlight the symptoms and remedial opportunities for those with depression, schizophrenia, bipolar syndrome, psychosis and suicidal tendencies.”

“According to a study conducted by the National Commission on Macroeconomics and Health, about 5 per cent of Indian population suffers from common mental disorders such as depression and anxiety. The underlying cause is stress. Under chronic stress, the brain seeks some or the other way to escape pressure. But today most people fail to find effective ways of coping with increasing stress. As a result, the brain sinks into deeper, negative thoughts, resulting in behavioural changes that may affect daily functioning. Since the mind and the body share a close relationship, stress causes an internal imbalance that could lead to depression and anxiety,” he added.

According to him, several factors like increasing crime rates, corruption and general unrest, at large, are huge contributors to mental instability among Indians, which clearly highlights the need for increased awareness and attention to mental health issues in our country. It’s the only way to eliminate stigma and improve mental health care in India.

The event concluded with Dr KB Kumar, professor and HOD, psychology department, and others speaking on the need for development of specialised manpower to serve the mentally ill.

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