World Mental Health Day is recognized every Oct. 10, landing on Thursday this year. The purpose of World Mental Health Day is to raise awareness about mental health and fight social stigma about the conversation surrounding mental health and well-being.
According to Mental Health America, there are over 10 million adults in the United States that have an unmet need for mental health treatment. Additionally, that number has not gotten smaller since 2011. Mental health is a very large issue and a lot of people throughout the world deal with mental health problems on a daily basis. Although mental health is a very prevalent issue, it’s surprising how it is still seen as a taboo topic in many ways.
There is also a stigma when it comes to finding guidance regarding mental health, especially about going to therapy. However, therapy is an extremely healthy, normal thing to be part of your routine.
A lot of people don’t go to therapy because they think their problems aren’t “big” enough. This shouldn't stop you from reaching out if you are considering visiting a counseling center. You can’t compare what other people are going through to what you are dealing with; that is like comparing apples to oranges.
Therapy is another form of health care and is no more different than seeing your primary care provider or going to the dentist, so it shouldn’t be seen any differently. It can often be life-saving as well. Just having someone to talk to about what's going on in your head can help you more than you may think.
Even if your mental health has been in a positive state lately, checking in with a therapist is still good for your overall well-being. It’s like going to an annual physical, but to help with your mental state.
Mental health should be talked about more openly more than just one day a year. How you can help decrease the stigma is by checking in on your friends about how they are doing, listening to them, and letting others know they can come to you if they are dealing with mental health problems.
There are a variety of resources on campus and in the Ames Community when it comes to counseling services. One of these resources is Student Counseling Services, located on the third floor of the Student Services building, which can be reached at 515-294-5056. They can also connect you with places around Ames and find a fit for you.