Mental Health Check: Facing our invisible enemy
This is not a drill! This is a mental health checkpoint. Take a minute to pause and ask yourself: "How am I, really?"
It’s officially been two years since the global lockdowns. If you’re reading this, congratulations on making it this far! But, I’m sure the mental battle wasn’t easy. For some, it’s more gruesome than we could ever imagine.
While we’re fighting to survive our external conditions, an invisible enemy has crept toward the battleground. Often, leaving us in defeat. And like many losses in life, it happens because we’re not prepared. Or for many, we don’t even realize there’s a mental war waging in our brains.
So, we at Flying Ketchup are taking the time to ask you this simple question – How are you, really?
How are you, really?
Most of us have been forced to face the hard-hitting effects of the pandemic, an actual war between Russians and Ukrainians, oil price hikes, our national elections, and a threatening global recession! No wonder we’re all going a little crazy.
With most of us just fighting to survive, it is inevitable that our mental and emotional health get pushed to the brink of exhaustion.
That’s why it’s important to pause from time to time and actually check on ourselves. The motor can’t keep running on low fuel right?
The pandemic alone does not only trigger normal responses to threats, it has also triggered mental health conditions and exacerbated existing ones among many people.
Loss of employment, the uncertainty of the future, and isolation are the top three causes of our deprecating mental health, among many others.
Data presented by the National Mental Health Program (NMHP) showed at least 1,145,871 individuals in the country have a depressive disorder, 520,614 with bipolar disorder, and 213,422 said they have schizophrenia.
“This is an understatement,” said DOH NMHP head Frances Prescilla Cuevas.
“This is just a figure that is underreported because it only tackles a few of the conditions,” she added.
In short, the need for attention on this issue is at its peak. We must act on this now, and together.
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We’re in this together
What can never be discussed enough is that mental health is also a community mission as much as it is a personal one. We’re all experiencing challenges together. So, it’s only just that we also lift each other up. Of course, checking on your loved ones is a minimum in these trying times.
The shame coming from asking for or accepting help, is slowly and surely being destigmatized.
Take MindNation for example. Since 2019, they have been injecting mental healthcare into the work environment. In turn, teams and individuals feel heard and cared for, so they also produce better quality work.
Besides that, our government is also making mental healthcare more accessible for the general public.
Late last year, the USAID RenewHealth Project in collaboration with the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) successfully launched the first ever mobile app to support Filipinos’ mental health needs. The Lusog-Isip app, meets people where they are – and puts mental health in their hands, literally.
In a mental crisis? There is also a Hopeline for you or your loved ones who are suffering.
These are just a few measures we can turn to. But at the end of the day, asking ourselves and acknowledging what’s wrong are still the first measures that we should practice daily.
With the major transitions that our country and our world is facing, there always remains a glimmer of hope. Remember that. You are not alone in this!