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One in four Brits will experience a mental health problem this year. Just like any illness, mental disorders can affect anyone at any time. However, despite the high prevalence and incidence rate, the British government isn’t doing enough to help support their citizens. Mental health is more than just a state of mind. It’s also a result of social issues and problems that are crippling the nation. Poverty, discrimination, the stigmatisation of mental health, and the lack of access to adequate health services are all factors that are affecting people’s state of mind.

The Stigma of Mental Health

Although one in four people in Britain will experience a mental health problem in their life, only one in eight of these people will receive treatment. This is because there is a strong stigma associated with mental illness that discriminates and cripples anyone that may want to seek help. 27 percent of young people have said that the stigma attached to mental illness has made them want to give up on life and the potential discrimination of mental illness patients has prevented them from seeking help. Mental illness is just like any physical health issue and therefore should be treated as such. The government should work to eliminate the stigma and encourage more people to have their mental health assessed to receive the treatment they need and deserve.

Lack of Access to Proper Health Care

Although anyone can suffer from mental health issues, there is a strong indicator that social class has a major impact on incidence rate. 54 percent of all people suffering from an emotional disorder live in households with gross incomes under £300 a week, compared to the 5 percent that come from families with a weekly income of over £600. This is related to the stresses of poverty that have not been alleviated by the government as well as the nation’s failure to bring public mental health services to people in these lower social classes. With increased access to proper healthcare, people across social classes can become more equal to each other and combat mental health together.

Spending Money on Ads over Health Care

The 2018 Government Communication Plan established a campaign to combat mental health. However, this plan focused on theories rather than action. It allocated millions of pounds of public money on advertising aimed at helping people develop skills to prevent the everyday problems that escalate into serious mental issues. This does not solve the problem. Most of the issues that people who suffer from mental illnesses encounter are not everyday difficulties. They can’t be solved by an ad. Therefore, the government should invest their money in mental health care facilities, professionals, and treatments instead of demeaning ads about life choices.

Most people associate mental illness with a state of the mind. However, the state of the nation is also a contributing factor to the high incidence rate. Once the government fixes its stance on mental health, then the nation can work together to rise above it.

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