Living with a chronic illness, where you know you will be dependent on medication and treatments to live the healthiest life possible, is not easy. Most meds come with side effects that can be as debilitating as the illness itself. Things become even more difficult if there is shame or a stigma attached to that illness.
While there has been more attention brought to the issue of stigmatizing mental health in the past few years, there are still millions of people who fail to get the treatment that they need over fear of shame and judgement. This minimalist art piece from Bridget Moore reminds us that medicine is ultimately designed to allow us to live fuller lives, and those who have done the work to seek treatment should be supported rather than ridiculed.
Mental illness affects 20-25% of us in our lifetimes. It is not always a debilitating or lifelong diagnosis, but sometimes prescriptions are necessary to allow patients to live to their full potential. You are not alone if you need prescriptions to balance your brain’s chemistry, nor is it shameful. (Dual Diagnosis)
It is estimated that pill shaming keeps up to 50% of those experiencing schizophrenia and 10-60% of depressed patients from taking their pills regularly. If people are treated like they are “crazy” for talking pills, they will attempt to stop taking them to appear “normal” again. The result can be a reversal of the positive effects of treatment and can even be deadly. There is no shame in treating yourself appropriately. (Healthline)
Question: Would you feel shameful for taking antibiotics if you had an infection? Why then do we attribute shame to getting treatment for mental health?
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