World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day History

World Mental Health Day seeks to raise awareness of mental health illnesses while educating the population and mobilizing efforts to support mental health. Mental health, which includes a person's emotional, psychological and social well-being, has become increasingly important in recent decades as an estimated 350 million people worldwide suffer from depression.

In 1992, the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) established World Mental Health Day in an effort to promote education and advocate for mental health sufferers.  The Foundation aims to provide further awareness and assistance for those suffering from a wide range of mental disorders in the hopes of saving lives and increasing quality of life for these individuals. World Mental Health Day is celebrated annually on October 10th.

World Mental Health Day Facts & Quotes

  • The 2016 theme for World Mental Health Day as promoted by World Federation for Mental Health was Dignity in Mental Health - Psychological & Mental Health First Aid for All.
  • Depression can lead to suicide. More than 800,000 people worldwide take their own lives every year.
  • Suicide is the third leading cause of death in the world for individuals 15 to 44.  Suicide rates have increased by 60% over the past 45 years.
  • 10-20% of children in the world experience a mental disorder. It is the leading cause of disability in youth.
  • I used to think that the worst thing in like was to end up alone. It's not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel alone. - Robin Williams, actor who committed suicide in 2014

World Mental Health Day Top Events and Things to Do

  • Volunteer your time at an organization that works with child mental health. Depression is a growing concern among children and organizations such as Big Brothers and Sisters of America, Teen Mental Health, NAMI and Children's Mental Health can help you find a local area to help your youth.
  • Watch a movie that touches on mental health issues or particular disorders. Some of our favorites are
    1) Bipolar: Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
    2) Schizophrenia: A Beautiful Mind (2001)
    3) OCD: As Good As It Gets (1997)
    4) Suicide: The Virgin Suicides (1999)
    5) Alzheimer's: Still Alice (2014)
    6) Borderline Personality: Girl, Interrupted (1999)
    7) Depression: Inside Out (2015)
    8) Post Traumatic Stress: Jacob's Ladder (1990)
  • Read a book about mental disorders. Some of our picks: The Bell Jar, Thirteen Reasons Why and All the Bright Places
  • Evaluate your own mental well-being or that of someone you are close to.
    - Are you always sad?
    - Do you have suicidal thoughts?
    - Do you feel that you have no reason to live?
  • Visit a psychologist to discuss any problems that have overwhelmed you lately.

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