Feeling depressed and having depression
Have you ever felt ashamed about skipping out on a plan or event because of mental illness?
Would the same apply if you had a health issue, such as a minor headache, instead of mild anxiety or heart palpitations? I’d say, probably not.
As someone who has struggled with anxiety for the past five years, it’s important for me to highlight the stigma that comes along with having mental health issues.
Mental illness has gotten a bad rep in popular culture.
Many shows portray the idea that if you have a mental health issue, you should be locked away from the public.
When Lana was trapped inside the fictional Briarcliff Mental Institution in “American Horror Story” for essentially choosing to be a lesbian, we saw how far the stigmas against mental illness have come, and how far we have to go.
It could be those with mental illness are shown to be locked away because the majority of the public can’t handle these issues.
How can we make it more natural to understand mental illness?
In cabaret shows and musicals such as My Beautiful Black Dog,
performers at the fringe are breaking the taboo of mental health
As a nation, the UK has never excelled at talking about its own state of mind. From discussions about depression to frank admissions of unhappiness, such matters have mostly remained taboo in favour of maintaining that very British stiff upper lip.
However, at this year’s Edinburgh festival fringe, mental health has emerged as an unexpected theme, with performers and comedians increasingly creating and championing pieces that break through the stigma.
As is reflective of the breadth of the fringe itself, these ideas and issues around mental health are being presented in pieces spanning standup and musicals to monologues and dramatic lectures. Already grabbing headlines is Fake It ’Til You Make It, a show created by comedian Bryony Kimmings and advertising executive Tim Grayburn.
Don't address your weight before your mental health
For many people, weight is depressing. Whether consequent to society's hateful weight biases, which expose individuals with obesity to mood-killing bullying, scorn and discrimination, or to personally held beliefs and attitudes, there's little doubt that weight is often a huge psychological burden.
There's little doubt, too, that those who struggle with both weight and depression often feel a tight relationship between them, that their depression would lift were they to lose weight. And for some it does.
A recent meta-analysis of the impact of intentional non-pharmacologic weight-loss programs on depression revealed that indeed weight loss is associated with an improvement in mood. But that's not the whole story. And so, before you rush out and join a weight-loss program, you need to know that the mood benefits shown occurred in folks enrolled in behavioral weight-loss programs, regardless of whether or not they lost weight. In other words, it wasn't the losing that was helping mood, it was something else.
The researchers believe that most likely mood was shown to improve due to either exercise or the social support offered by the programs themselves.