World Mental Health Day, on 10 October, is a day to raise awareness of the effects mental illness has on millions of people’s lives across the world, and to help educate and inform us all.

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Around the world, one in four people will have some kind of mental illness during their lifetime. Around 450 million people are living with a mental health problem right now, making it one of the biggest health issues in the world. Yet people rarely talk about any mental health problems they have because there is still a lot of stigma.

World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health (WMH) Day was first celebrated in 1992. It was created to raise awareness of just how common mental health issues are, fight against stigma and campaign for better conditions and treatment for people who have a mental health problem. The number of people and organisations involved in celebrating WMH Day has grown and grown, and now many countries, such as Australia, actually have a Mental Health Week, which includes WMH Day on 10 October. Each year there is a different theme. For example, in 2017 the theme was mental health in the workplace.

Mental health in the workplace

Employers should create an environment which supports good mental health. This also helps to reduce the number of days employees take off work. Employers should help employees to achieve a good work–life balance by encouraging them to take breaks and holidays and discouraging them from working at home in the evenings and at weekends. Employees should also feel that they can talk to their managers about any problems they might have, and employers should be supportive.

Get some exercise

Of course, we also need to look after our own mental health. Most people know that exercise is good for your body, but did you also know how good it is for your mental health? Regular exercise can really help you deal with anxiety and depression. Spending time in nature can also make people more relaxed and reduce stress. So why not get your exercise by going for a walk in a park or the countryside?

Eat well

Your diet can also change your mood. If you eat crisps, cake, chocolate, etc., your blood sugar will rise and fall, making you feel cross and tired. Make sure you are eating enough vegetables and fruit or you may be missing some nutrients you need to feel good. It’s also important to drink enough water – being thirsty can make it difficult to think clearly.

Spend time with family and friends

Everyone needs some time alone, but it’s also good for us to spend time with other people. If you feel lonely, try volunteering. It’s a good way of meeting new people, and you will feel good for helping others. One survey showed that 48 per cent of people who volunteered for more than two years said they felt less depressed as a result. If you do have close friends and family, try talking to them more about how you feel and asking them to support you. Every time someone speaks to someone else about mental illness, it helps to reduce the stigma.

What to do on World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day encourages us to be more aware of both our own mental health and other people’s. As well as looking after yourself, think about how you could support other people. For example, you could find out more about common issues such as anxiety and depression, so you will understand friends’ and colleagues’ problems better. You could also encourage your workplace to start a wellness programme that would benefit everyone – they might offer free exercise classes or encourage employees to take walks at lunchtime. Companies with wellness programmes have found employees take 28 per cent less time off for sickness.

Anything you do on WMH Day, even just talking to people about it, will help us all to understand and support people better.

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Comments

Not at all. I wish the best and thank you.

i think that we should care about our mental health because it's our motor.
we can do some stuffs as the author said sport and volunturing and also practice a hobby can help us to be positive and to worry less.

Have a nice day sokind. It is seams for me that mental hilth relate with the atmosfere in the famely. If relatives love each other then in famely is good mental hilth and mindfulness. And then sport and so one. I think the conversation people eah other is the best that maked human. Isn't it?

I quite agree with all the suggestions by the author. In addition i think it would help if we make it a duty have regular medical checks. This often help to identify the symptoms at the early stage and so could be managed accordingly.
Furthermore, mental health as a course should be included in the the school curriculum . When students are informed at an early age,the awareness level would be high .Consequently they are able to take steps that will militate against mental health issues.

I have nothing to say about menthal health except what is written by author.

Hi! This is a good article about what Menthal Health involves, i didnt know there was a World Mental Health Day! but it is so interesting... I live in a big city, which is Mexico City, and trust me, we should be talking about this and raise awareness in some way. We live under a big pressure just to go to one way from another, i mean about traffic and there is no respect for anyone. Obviously this take us to have a real problems of anxiety, because you are never in time and this have repercussions in our mental health!

Greetings

Excuse me as far as I understood take a day off - is it holiday? I asked about it. "Take off work" is it means: holiday? Sorry.

Hello Dklin,

You can take a day off for many reasons, including because you are sick. In the context of the earlier sentence, I think it is clear that the writer was referring to this reason.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi everyone! Can you help me with phrase: " This also help to reduce the number of days employees take off work". This take off "quality" work?

Hello Dklin,

The phase tells us that employees will be sick less (one of the reasons for taking a day off is that you are sick) if the text's recommendations are followed.

I'm not sure what your second question means, I'm afraid.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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