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Importance of mental health

by Fenway Health

According to Fenway Health, May is known as Mental Health Awareness Month, also known as Mental Health Month. It has been observed each May in the United States since 1949. It has never been more important than now to recognize that mental health is an essential component to one’s overall health and wellbeing, and that mental illnesses are common and treatable.

It is known that some people  are more vulnerable than others, everyone faces challenges in life that can impact their mental health. After all, just a few months ago, none of us had any idea that all our worlds would be upended by the coronavirus, and that worry, isolation, loneliness, depression and anxiety would become collective experiences shared by literally everyone. By virtue of our birthright, as human beings none of us are immune. We’ve written a guide to Mental Health in the Age of COVID for this very reason, and to help share important information with our community. Perhaps this collective experience of living with the emotional and psychological impacts brought on by COVID will help cultivate not only more awareness of mental health issues, but more compassion too. One can hope.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), mental illnesses are commonplace, with nearly one in five adults in America living with a serious mental illness. One-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14, with three-quarters by the age of 24. An estimated 17.3 million adults in the United States had at least one major depressive episode. An estimated 31.1% of adults will experience an anxiety disorder at some time in their lives. Approximately 7.9 million adults have co-occurring mental health and addiction disorders.

According to a 2017 Centers for Disease Control report, suicide was the tenth leading cause of death overall in the United States, claiming the lives of nearly 47,000 people. Suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 34, and the fourth leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 35 and 54. There were more than twice as many suicides in the United States as there were homicides.

As a study in 2012  from the Institute of Medicine found that nearly one in five older Americans has one or more mental health or substance use conditions. According to 2018 data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and reported by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, adults in the 75-84 and 85 and older age groups are among those with the highest rates of suicide.

Racism, historic adversity, and race-based exclusion from health, educational, social and economic resources translates into socioeconomic disparities that have a direct link to mental health issues. While most ethnic and racial minority groups have similar – or in some cases, fewer – mental health disorders than whites, ethnic and racial minorities often bear a disproportionately higher degree of disability resulting from mental health disorders.

For LGBTQ people, stigma and discrimination – part of what is known as “minority stress” – can take a terrible toll on mental health. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, LGBTQ individuals are more than twice as likely as their heterosexual peers to suffer from a mental health condition such as major depression or generalized anxiety disorder, and LQBTQ people are at higher risk than the general population for suicidal thoughts and attempts.

LGBTQ youth are particularly at risk for negative mental health outcomes. The CDC reports that LGB youth seriously contemplate suicide at almost three times the rate of heterosexual youth, and are almost five times as likely to have attempted suicide.

My thoughts

After reading through this article it made me want to research more on different types of mental health issues because I became interested and wanted to understand more about it. Despite my own mental health issues I wanted to learn more to help me understand what others go through as well as find ways to help myself as well as others.


With this in mind I really wanted to make sure that my Softus Hugs project reflected me as well as the message well and coming across this article first when I went through my research made me want to look more into the subject, become educated and also made me more motivated to create a project that brough awareness to the subject well as well as was able to bring comfort to not just those dealing with mental health issues but to everyone because you start to realise that even if a person doesnt go through mental health issues they are always going through something and no matter what will always need comfort even if they don't want to be in the presence of someone, sometimes all they need is a hug. Eventually if these issues/ emotions aren't helped or ignored they can eventually grow bigger and bigger until it explodes causing the person to be overwhelmed.

So when I created softus hugs I kept this in mind because even if its an inanimate object it can still bring comfort if it means something to you hence why this project became important to me as a designer and as a person.

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You can do it!

Check out the previous blog

Softus Wallpapers

Free downloadable wallpapers

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Check out the next blog blog

Behind the hug

How and why it was created

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