Mental illnesses can take many forms, just like physical illnesses do. Mental illness is common. Statistics show that one in every five Canadians will have a mental health problem at some point in their lives. If you or someone you know develops the symptoms of a mental illness, it is important to get it diagnosed and to start treatment as soon as possible.
Mental illnesses include schizophrenia, mood disorders (such as depression and bipolar disorder), anxiety disorders, personality disorders, and eating disorders. Mental illnesses are still feared and misunderstood by many people, but the fear will disappear as people learn more about them. If you, or someone you know has a mental illness, there is good news for you: all mental illnesses can be treated.
Mental illness doesn’t discriminate, but people with mental illness may face discrimination due to stigma. The stigma experienced by people with a mental illness can be more destructive than the illness itself. Learning more about it is a crucial step in dispelling stigma and stopping prejudice.
This quick guide is designed to give you practical information if you or someone you love is affected by mental illness.