Australia is celebrating Mental Health Week this week. During Mental Health Awareness Week, we honor those affected by mental illness, recognize the efforts of people and organizations that work to improve our mental health, and explore ways to protect our mental health. In the event that you are seeking mental health treatment, can assist you.

This week’s key messages are as follows:

1. There is some degree of impact on everyone

An average of one in five Australians experiences a mental illness each year. There is a 50 percent chance that every Australian between the ages of 16 and 85 will experience some form of mental illness at some point in their lives.

A mental illness accounts for almost three out of ten years of disability in the Australian population, making it the third most preventable cause of death. Almost no other illness causes more days lost to illness than major depression.

2. It is stigma that prevents awareness, prevents diagnosis, and hinders treatment

It remains a stigmatizing disease despite the fact that mental illness is a common occurrence in Australia.

There is stigma attached to mental illness, which hinders discussion, awareness, and access to prevention, diagnosis, and care for individuals with mental illness.

3. Global burdens

People might think mental health is a problem only faced by rich countries – but that’s not the case. In developing countries, three out of four people have mental illnesses, and nearly 450 million of these people live with mental illness. In these countries, treatment is limited by limited resources, further compounding this burden. The number of patients with depression symptoms in Nigerian health centers is 25%, but only one out of six are diagnosed and treated.

4. There are some great people doing some great things.

It’s important to acknowledge and celebrate great people who are doing incredible work in the mental health field. A number of organizations are working to address the challenges of unmet need and under-recognised illness, including Smiling Mind, BeyondBlue, Butterfly Foundation and Blackdog Institute. In a powerful and meaningful effort to protect the next generation in their field, the Australian Medical Students’ Association turned blue this week to promote mental health.

5. The possibility of safeguarding your mental health exists

The last thing you need to know is that safeguarding your mental health is possible – you can reduce your chances of developing mental illness if you do so.

Better Health Channel shares 10 great ideas for improving your health. They include spending time with others, participating in community projects, dealing with stress, taking care, and being adventurous.

You won’t regret reading it!

A look at mental health’s faces

In addition to remembering and supporting people with mental illness this week, it is also important to support those impacted by mental illness. Insights into mental health from people affected by NCDs and those close to them are featured in NCDFREE’s The Face of NCDs campaign.