Initiative Update

Women and Mental Health: Awareness and proactiveness is Key

Marie Abanga
Posted August 6, 2020 from Cameroon
Women and Mental Health talk
It was a great honour to be invited on the epic platform of the Cameroon Career Women last August 5th 2020

Mental health is defined as a state of well-being whereby individuals recognize their abilities, are able to cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and make a contribution to their communities. It is about enhancing competencies of individuals and communities and enabling them to achieve their self-determined goals”. (Source: Department of Mental Health and Substance Dependence (2003: 7): “Investing in Mental Health, Geneva, Switzerland) Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood. Mental health issues for women are significantly higher as compared to those for men. According to the WHO Regional Office for Europe (2002), overall rates are 33.2% versus 21.7%. Today, about 450 million people suffer from a mental or behavioural disorder. According to WHO’s Global Burden of Disease 2001, 33% of the years lived with disability (YLD) are due to neuropsychiatric disorders, a further 2.1% to intentional injuries Unipolar depressive disorders alone lead to 12.15% of years lived with disability, and rank as the third leading contributor to the global burden of diseases. Four of the six leading causes of years lived with disability are due to neuropsychiatric disorders (depression, alcohol-use disorders, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder). (Source: Department of Mental Health and Substance Dependence (2003: 8): “Investing in Mental Health, Geneva, Switzerland) The World Health Report (WHO, 1998) states categorically that: Women’s health is inextricably linked to their status in society. It benefits from equality, and suffers from discrimination. Today, the status and wellbeing of countless millions of women worldwide remain tragically low. As a result, human well-being suffers, and the prospects for future generations are dimmer. A lot of traumatic events have been happening in our societies and women have largely been the fatal causalities. We may wonder what was their state of mental health that led them to find themselves in compromising situationships and stay in those situations to the point where they lost their lives. Mental health is very important for women to be aware of and take the best steps they can to take care of theirs and those of their families as a natural follow up... Women may suffer more from mental health challenges because; 1) They are heavy burden bearers; 2) They are at high risk of depression 3) Of trauma, violence, and abuse 4) Of disaster planning and response 5) Of High level of dependency on men WAYS TO MAINTAIN POSITIVE MENTAL HEALTH In order for women to take care of their mental wellbeing, the following could be done: Getting professional help if you need it Connecting with others Staying positive Getting physically active Helping others Getting enough sleep Developing coping skills Self empowerment  

How many people have you impacted since your last update?

5500

Comments 13

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Nini Mappo
Aug 06
Aug 06

Thank yo for this share Marie. I especially like the definition of mental health. Until I read that I had not realised that every time I hear of mental health it is the lack of it that is spoken of, and I've never thought of what words describe a healthy mental state.
Your impact is glowing;)
Keep pulsing!

Marie Abanga
Aug 08
Aug 08

Dear Nini,

Thank you. Indeed when we focus only what is lacking and how people suffer, without saying what could cause such suffering and above all how we could prevent them, we might leaving out se key aspects of the work.

Hello, Marie,

Kudos to you for raising awareness about Mental Health Issues and how to prevent and treat them. It’s an important topic to discuss about.

Congrats on your increasing impact!

Marie Abanga
Aug 08
Aug 08

Dear Kaye,

Thank you so so much. Indeed the pandemic has led many to realize we are all prone to a mental health challenge and what we can do to take care of ourselves when tough times or stressful situations pop up.

You're welcome, love. I'm not an exception there, sis. Keep up the good work.

Ellie E.
Aug 07
Aug 07

Thank you for sharing!

Marie Abanga
Aug 08
Aug 08

My pleasure dear

Chi8629
Aug 08
Aug 08

Thank you for sharing.

Marie Abanga
Aug 08
Aug 08

My pleasure dear

otahelp
Aug 08
Aug 08

Hi Marie i am beginning to understand how damaging simple stress or things of life can Change ones perceptions or behaviours. I now know that Some actions we take for granated should not be so. We should take them seriously especially when it is with Women. All burden bearers like Women need to be protected and add to their daily stress. Stay safe

Marie Abanga
Aug 08
Aug 08

Dear Sis,

Thank you for your comment. This is what I really want to get women to look into. And it makes me feel so fulfilled.

Millynairi
Aug 23
Aug 23

Dear Marie,
I find your story quite educative. From it I have learnt so much that I didn't know about mental health. Thanks for sharing.

Marie Abanga
Aug 24
Aug 24

Dear Milly,

All my pleasure. I appreciate your encouragement