As this year’s European Mental Health Week focuses on young people’s mental health, MHE has re-released the ‘Words Matter’ Infographic together with a Social Media Kit encouraging young people to feel unashamed by conversations around mental health. The importance of empowering young people and promoting their mental health cannot be emphasised enough since half of the mental health problems affecting adults start during adolescence.
Although mental health is becoming more prominent in public discourse, stigmatisation remains widespread. For many people, mental health barriers are the ultimate barriers against help. Labels, symptoms, and clichés can often cause a great deal of harm to conversations relating to and surrounding mental health. We must do more to improve mental health literacy and public communication initiatives on mental health.
The way we discuss mental health can reinforce negative stereotypes and be stigmatising without us even realising it. Language can be a very powerful tool for creating awareness and fighting stigma. If we are not mindful, the wrong words can work against us.