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  • World Mental Health Day is all about understanding, prioritizing, and raising awareness for mental health, which involves one’s emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing.
  • Mental health has always been important, but today’s statistics raises new concerns for our society, as more than 300 million people around the world suffer from depression.
  • Left untreated, mental illnesses like depression can lead one to make life-altering decisions like taking their own life.
  • You can observe World Mental Health Day by volunteering at an organization that focuses their efforts on supporting and raising mental health awareness.
  • You can also observe World Mental Health Day by improving your own understanding of mental health through reading books or watching movies, and by prioritizing self-care.

World Mental Health Day is observed on October 10th every year in more than 100 countries to promote mental health awareness and advocate for individuals with mental health issues. Its aim is to expand society’s knowledge and assist people suffering from a wide range of mental disorders. The World Federation for Mental Health established World Mental Health Day in 1992.

Mental health includes a person’s emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. Observe World Mental Health Day on October 10 and continue to raise mental health awareness throughout the year by supporting local, regional, and national organizations that support these efforts.

Mental Health Facts and Stats

Today’s mental health statistics prove that understanding and prioritizing our mental health is more important than ever before:

  • Mental health is defined as a satisfactory psychological state, in which someone is emotionally well and able to function properly.
  • Mental health disorders affect nearly 18.5% of the total adult population in the US, every year, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
  • More than 300 million people of all ages globally suffer from depression, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • Depression can lead to suicide, especially untreated—according to the WHO, approximately one million people die by suicide each year worldwide.
  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death among individuals between 10 and 34, and the fourth leading cause of death among those between 25 and 54 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Of the 74.5 million children in the US, it is estimated that 17.1 million of them have suffered with a mental illness, based on a recent Children’s Mental Health Report.

What Should I Do on World Mental Health Day?

The following will help you learn more about and support mental health on World Mental Health Day or any other time of the year:

1) Volunteer.

Volunteer for an organization that supports mental health, such as one that focuses on child and adolescent mental health. Depression is a growing concern among children and organizations such as Big Brothers and Sisters of America, Teen Mental Health, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness and Children’s Mental Health can help locate a local area for you to volunteer and help the youth in your community.

2) Read a book.

Consider reading a book to more clearly understand mental disorders like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. A few renowned books that focus on characters dealing with mental illness include…

  • The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  • All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
  • It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

3) Watch a movie.

Similarly, you could watch a movie that touches on mental health issues and depicts what it’s like to experience these mental health issues.

  • Inside Out
  • A Beautiful Mind
  • To the Bone
  • Silver Linings Playbook

4) Practice self-care.

You can also honor World Mental Health Day by prioritizing your health and wellbeing! Think of a few things you enjoy that also have some enormous benefits for your mental and physical health: exercising, eating a scrumptious (yet nutritious) meal, spending time with loved ones, painting, watching YouTube videos, and on and on.

Taylor Bennett

Taylor Bennett

Taylor Bennett is the Content Development Manager at Thriveworks. She devotes herself to distributing important information about mental health and wellbeing, writing mental health news and self-improvement tips daily. Taylor received her bachelor’s degree in multimedia journalism, with minors in professional writing and leadership from Virginia Tech. She is a co-author of Leaving Depression Behind: An Interactive, Choose Your Path Book and has published content on Thought Catalog, Odyssey, and The Traveling Parent.

Check out “Leaving Depression Behind: An Interactive, Choose Your Path Book” written by AJ Centore and Taylor Bennett."

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