16 Dec

posted by Bernadette view other posts from this author

Stamp Stamp Stamp out the stigma of mental health

The DIY plaster v mental health 

The recent high profile news articles by the BBC news concerning the inequality in treatment of mental health patients with celebrities like Emma Thompson, Comedian Frank Skinner, presenter Graham Norton , Ruby Wax and Dawn French , now taking up the cause is close to our own hearts here at The stamp out the stigma campaign will no doubt be of enormous benefit to both stamping out the stigma and applying pressure to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to do more.

When you have a minor cut you often reach for a plaster, especially if it is bleeding. The symbolism of the plaster indicates to everyone you are hurt, it matters not how hurt you are just that that you have injured yourself, and the plaster is the visible sign and warning to others , to be careful with the injured area. That insignificant little plaster will often invite an enquiry as to what happened, how are you healing, are you in pain, do you need another plaster, oh yes the power of that little plaster gets more results than just its healing process.

Unfortunately mental health cannot have such a plaster, it is a silent invisible, hurt, it still needs treatment but there is rarely an outward indication to indicate you are hurt. The issue with mental health treatments even for minor issues , is that unlike the DIY plaster mental health treatments are often not used by people because there is no glory pride or stamp yet that indicates , yes I am hurt, Yes I am getting better and yes I am still me and still mentally healthy, there is no little plaster that says , its just one part of me that is injured and the rest of me is working fine. its just one little part of the millions of parts that make me “me” that’s not quite right. In fact most people will suffer in silence for years and sometimes forever rather than have any trace of a stamp that indicates mental health issue.

The question is why is this, who is a fault for the stigma of mental health, who is promoting it and feeding it, why does it still exist in an age of enlighten public awareness, where 4 in 10 men in the UK suffer with mental health issues, minor and major, and three out of four mentally ill children are receiving no treatment at all. The answer to this question is not easy to answer, no doubt a variety of answers contribute to the truth. Unless the mental health sufferers their selves can be given the tools and support to come out and stand up and be proud to say I have a mental health issue and its painful and hard to get better, but , I am getting better , then mental health will always be stigmatised and mental health sufferers will always be treated as different. 

While we wait for the world to get use to the fact that mental health issues are not a stigma there are methods to get treatment, that will afford the sufferers, their right to confidentiality and to be able to seek treatment in a modern way that does not interfere with the protection of their character, status, employment, etc, the use of internet therapy is on the increase and sites like are making great leaps in providing instant accessibility to psychotherapists and counsellors for people with minor and major mental health issues, in a way that is compatible with modern day living and affordable . At we designed our search bar to enable people to search for therapists using, Gender, Cultural background, price, language, location and availability, and this makes the compatibility of the Therapists and clients a more natural fit, with the client being in control of who they choose. A safety net surrounds our visitors that their chosen Therapist is qualified and authentic and working to the highest ethical guidelines of their accreditation body.

The stigma of mental health must end, a lot is being done to try and do this , The mental health foundation MIND is working around the clock with campaigns and publications and we at TOSPS believe that there are indications that the stigma is starting to loose its grip and the attitude of the public has started to change, but the change is tiny and slow. A recent poll launched on Twitter and Facebook by The one stop psychotherapy shop indicated that the tide is slowly changing and the stigma is slowly diminishing, but, it also showed a massive 67% of people still believed that the stigma has not diminish. A greater understanding of mental health issues is beginning to be accepted without stigma by 33% of the public, so the message is getting through. Mental health suffers are also showing signs in greater numbers of taking steps to get help for their issues without fear of stigma by using internet based counselling to help provide the help they need in real time therefore avoiding the lengthy waiting lists . A survey done by the Zurich university has shown that internet based counselling is as good as if not better than Practice based therapy.

In early 2015 had an average of 230 people visit its site a day looking to take charge of their own mental health treatments, today we get an average of 2600 visits a day, this is a clear sign that the stigma is dying and a new understanding of mental health issues is already steadily starting to help stamp out the stigma, however there is still a long way to go and a lot more governmental budget is need.