World Mental Health Day: Mental Health Is A Universal Human Right | The Psychology Company
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World Mental Health Day: Mental Health is a Universal Human Right

| World Mental Health Day: Mental Health is a Universal Human Right | The Psychology Company

World Mental Health Day: Mental Health is a Universal Human Right

World Mental Health Day, observed on October 10th each year, is a global initiative designed to raise awareness of mental health issues, promote mental well-being, and mobilise support for those struggling with mental health challenges. In a world where the pressures and challenges of daily life can take a toll on our mental well-being, World Mental Health Day serves as a crucial reminder of the importance of prioritising our mental health.  This year’s theme, ‘Mental Health is a Universal Human Right’ encourages us to reflect on the state of our mental health and the ways in which we can contribute to a mentally healthier world.


In a world where conversations about human rights often focus on political freedom, education, and economic opportunities, one essential aspect tends to be overlooked: mental health. Yet, mental health is, unequivocally, a universal human right. It is not a luxury but a fundamental and intrinsic part of human well-being. It’s crucial to recognise that mental health is not merely the absence of mental illness. It encompasses emotional, psychological, and social well-being and influencing how we think, feel, and interact with the world around us.


Understanding that mental health is a universal human right necessitates safeguards against mental health risk factors. Safeguarding against these risks often involves a combination of individual and societal measures. For example, discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation, or mental health status can negatively impact mental well-being. We need to work towards eliminating discrimination, advocate for equal rights and opportunities, and promote awareness and education to reduce stigma.


Mental Health as a universal human right also means everyone should have access to readily available, easily accessible and high quality care. Sadly many individuals lack access to mental health services due to various barriers, including cost and availability. Private therapy is often prohibitively expensive. Some of the psychologists in The Psychology Company offer a few low cost therapy sessions but this is woefully inadequate given the need. This is something we are hoping to address in future. 


Despite the recognition of mental health as a universal human right, stigma continues to surround mental health issues, preventing countless individuals from seeking help. Stigma creates barriers to access and perpetuates discrimination, further violating human rights. It’s imperative that we break the silence and challenge these harmful stereotypes. Ending the stigma surrounding mental health is a collective responsibility that requires efforts at both the individual and societal levels. On an individual level you can educate yourself  about mental health and its challenges, You could also encourage open and non-judgmental conversations about mental health with friends, family, and colleagues. Sharing personal experiences can help normalize the discussion. I for example suffered from severe panic attacks when I was in my 20s and talk very openly about this to my friends and colleagues and when appropriate to my clients. Finally, if you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues, seek help. Remember that reaching out is an act of courage, not weakness.


As we celebrate World Mental Health Day, let us remember that mental health is not a destination but a continuous journey. At The Psychology Company, we are honoured to be part of your journey toward a healthier and more fulfilling life. Together, we can break down barriers, reduce stigma, and promote mental well-being for all.