10 Common Mental Health Myths Broken Down in Simple Terms


MNI Media

Release Date

Friday, September 21, 2018


MNI Media continues to highlight key information on the issue of mental health. Today we feature Prakash Masand M.D., a psychiatrist and founder of the Centers of Psychiatric Excellence (https://www.copepsychiatry.com/). He breaks down for our readers 10 common mental health myths:

Myth: Bipolar disorder is just another name for mood swings.  
Fact: Bipolar disorder is a serious illness with severe mood swings that interfere with one’s functioning and can lead to suicide.

Myth: Once you feel better you can stop taking your psychiatric medication.
Fact: Almost all patients with psychiatric illness need maintenance treatment for a period of time and sometimes lifelong to prevent relapses and recurrences just like diabetes and heart disease patients.

Myth: Psychiatric illness is a result of bad relationships.
Fact: All psychiatric illnesses have a genetic component and an environmental component, bad relationships being one of several factors. 

Myth: Suicide is not a problem in the U.S.
Fact: Suicide is a major preventable public health problem. There are approximately 123 suicides in the U.S. every day.

Myth: Treatment for psychiatric illness is a cop-out by weak people.
Fact: Treatment is necessary for psychiatric illness like it is for any other medical condition.

Myth: Psychiatric illnesses are due to weak character or inadequate coping skills.
Fact: Psychiatric illness are medical illnesses with biological and psychological origins like all other illnesses.

Myth: All patients with Schizophrenia are dangerous.
Fact: Only a small proportion of patients with schizophrenia can be violet usually when untreated. 

Myth: Talk therapy is just whining about your problems.
Fact: Several types of talk therapy like cognitive behavior therapy are as effective as medications in treating mild depression and anxiety disorders.

Myth: ADHD is a new way to explain bad behavior.
Fact: ADHD often persists into adulthood in 40% of cases and is a real problem for many children.

Myth: Depression is just sadness that will go away.
Fact: Depression is a serious medical illness with morbidity and mortality.


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