Let’s take a moment of silence two minutes of your time is required. This silence is to remember the millions of victims who have lost their lives to suicide and depression. I will hold the silence with you start your timer.
In the next eighteen minutes a small fraction of the two minutes we took to remember a suicide is completed. On www.everyminute.org every minute of the day a suicide is happening. The frightening results of suffering from hidden mental illness. Statistics taken worldwide show four hundred fifty million people suffer from these conditions. Mental illness has become the leading cause of disability and ill-health worldwide. These numbers are not one hundred percent due to a great number not getting help for their hidden disorder.
Numbers and statistics show one thing this is a global epidemic. Disheartening in nature the bigger picture here should be to show what hidden mental illness does to a person. A great number of people go untreated due to stigmas placed by society, cost of treatment, and lack of preventive care for those with depression. Other factors that play into this mass epidemic is religious belief, lack of financial support, and lack of personal interest of the public. With more information and support with removal of stigma these rates could potentially drop. Although it will never fully stop, we can find ways to prevent these rates from rising further and save lives.
Statistics show the numbers of people affected by mental illness and loss of life by suicide. What they don’t show is the mental state leading up to one’s mentality committing the act itself. The internet has resources to educate members of society to notice signs of suicide but it’s commonly used to educate the public about a small part of what is bringing on this epidemic. Considering the stigma placed by populations of religion and dogmas of public; depression is still seen not as illness but a choice. Around seventy-eight percent of people who go untreated for mental illness and depression have some forms of drug addiction. Stigma around drug use widely ignores those who show signs of mental illness causing people to fear getting treatment. In some religions people living with mental illness and depression are exiled and shamed for their conditions. With biasing opinions being placed on those who are untreated it contributes to the ongoing pandemic.
Untreated mental illness is the leading cause of suicides worldwide. This includes Bipolar, Schizophrenia, depression, as well Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other hidden mental illnesses. Mental illness can affect anyone regardless of social stature, financial stature, and personal stature. Mental illness is not the only factor for suicide rates. Other factors are grief, trauma, drug abuse, job loss, and injuries and other contributing life events. Genetics can play a part as well in untreated mental illness. With the factors contributing to the epidemic of suicides and depression more research and knowledge and understanding has to be placed to better understand why this is occurring. Four hundred and Fifty million lives is one too many.
Written by Ali Johnson
Sources used in research