Understanding mental illnesses has been the focus of a new documentary series by webMD and the Mental Health Foundation of Australia.
The Mental Health Commission of Australia has produced a new series entitled Mental Illness Understanding Mental Illnesses.
It looks at the mental health care system and how we treat people with mental illness and the ways in which we can change it.
The series will air on 7 April on the ABC TV channel.
Mental illness is the term used for mental illnesses that are associated with specific conditions such as depression, anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder.
It is estimated there are about 3.3 million Australians living with mental health problems and around 10 per cent of them have severe mental illnesses.
The MHCI has published a national report on mental health that says people with serious mental illnesses can be diagnosed at an early stage.MHCI Director Dr Paul Hulme says people can benefit from early diagnosis of mental illness.
“If you know there are mental illnesses or if you can see someone, then you know that there’s something wrong, and it’s a treatment,” Dr Hulmes said.
“When we think about it from a clinical perspective, there are some people who are really sick, and that’s why they need treatment, they need to get better, they’re not ready to live life to the fullest.”
Dr Hulges view is that it is important for people to understand the different types of mental illnesses and that the mental wellbeing of people living with the conditions can be improved.
“There are some conditions that are very severe and very common, and those are people with severe mental illness who are not getting the treatment they need and we want to support those people who do,” Dr Furlong said.
Dr Hulemans view is the MHC’s approach needs to change.
“The way we treat mental health is, we treat it as a medical problem, not as a mental health issue.”
I think there’s a bit of a misunderstanding around mental health and mental illness in general,” Dr Gough said.
The documentary also highlights the importance of getting support from friends and family.”
We really do need to look after our mental health, we really need to support each other, and I think that’s really important,” Dr Tovey said.