Is growth possible without adequate mental health? Most would be quick to say “no,” thus, leading us to the next most important question – “are we educating the younger generation about mental health issues?”
With an increasing number of adolescents being diagnosed with various mental disorders, one continues to ponder if schools have adequate measures in place that would help make a positive effect on mental health. Schools in most countries prioritize academic success as opposed to reporting about the levels of happiness in their students.
Celebrating mental health of all
In the third week of October every year the nation observes the National Health Education Week. The week is being observed from October 17 to 21 this year to highlight mental health issues that many Americans are facing today. The week will also focus on issues related to public health and will promote understanding among people about the importance of health education and its promotion in today’s society.
Lack of information about possible mental disorders and their symptoms prevent many from seeking timely help as most are unaware of their existing emotional weaknesses that can hamper their lives in the long run.
There is an imperative need for educational institutions to promote knowledge about mental issues by providing relevant information apart from imparting a set of emotional and social skills needed for the overall development.
Issues such as social isolation, rejection by peers, incessant bullying and bias based on racial and economic factors increase the risk of children to suffer from psychiatric disorders due to lack of emotional stability. Schools intending to focus on inclusion of positive mental health strategies must ensure:
- environment which promotes safety while empowering students with necessary rights and responsibilities
- focus on learning about social and economic developments that influence mental health in the long run
- importance of familial attachments, community relationships and service ties
- consolidated promotion and planning towards complete mental health
- capacity building for development and advancement of mental health
Tackling mental health crisis in adolescents
Looking at the pervasiveness of mental health issues worldwide, schools should play an important role in ensuring proper mental health among the wards. The need to include information on psychiatric illnesses as a part of the curriculum is being emphasized as the severity of mental illnesses in teenagers is likely to be influenced by their experiences in their schools and surrounding environment.
Though social and psychological factors play an important role, genetic factors are not being ruled out while estimating the prevalence of mental disorders among adolescents.
Healthy mind and education depend on each other as the presence of one influences the other. To promote this interdependence and co-occurring relationship, schools must bring about necessary educational reforms while replacing their rigid outlook of assessing students through their academic performance with a broader framework, involving well-researched conceptualization of educational programs involving mental health.
A look at the increasing prevalence of mental illnesses among the young generation in the U.S. raises the urgency to plan and implement policies based on strong foundation and backed by extensive research.
Strategies should support students’ learning along with taking care of their emotional health needs. Integrated models that stress on learning about the importance of mental health while paying necessary attention to the all-round performances is the need of the hour.
Approaching experts for timely recovery
While recovery is recommended for those afflicted with mental illnesses, experts advise timely diagnosis to prevent their exacerbation. If you or your loved one is suffering from any mental illness, contact Sovereign Health to know about our mental health treatment facilities in the U.S. Call at our 24/7 helpline number 866-973-7164 or chat online for information about our anxiety disorders treatment centers in California.