Mental Health Awareness Week
This week marks Mental Health Awareness Week, a hidden illness that affects so many in the community. Living with a mental health condition is overwhelming and can be terrifying, especially if not met with the correct support.
Within the Medical Negligence team at Wolferstans we have seen a wide range of mental health disorders, either caused as a result of a physical injury, the incorrect treatment or delay in diagnosis of a mental health disorder, or as a result of serving in the Armed Forces.
Those suffering from mental health conditions, particularly Veterans, often find it difficult to understand what support is available to them and whether they are being treated correctly. The impact of mental health disorders can be significant, particularly where met with a delay in diagnosis.
A report commissioned by Help for Heroes was published earlier this year, in which it estimated that at least 6,195 Veterans suffer from physical health problems, resulting in medical discharge. This does not consider those suffering from mental health problems and it was estimated that over 61,000 regular Veterans suffer from psychological injury.
This does not take into consideration the number of people suffering from mental illness outside of the Armed Forces trying to cope in the community and under the care of the NHS. It is estimated that one in four people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year. The overall number of people with mental health problems has not changed significantly in recent years, so it is surprising that mental health is still somewhat of a hidden illness.
Mental Health Awareness Week is an important reminder of the stigma that still exists towards those who are diagnosed with mental illness, but coping with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, eating disorder or schizophrenia should receive the same level of care as those with a physical injury or illness. Beyond this, adults who have serious mental illness are at an increased risk for chronic medical illnesses such as coronary artery disease and hypertension.
It is essential that those struggling with mental health disorders seek help and support, and in return receive the correct treatment. At Wolferstans we work with a number of charities across the community to ensure our client’s are fully supported, including the Mental Health Foundation who are running the annual campaign this week. Follow the support and awareness on Twitter #mhaw17 #mentalhealth
If you think you have suffered a delay in diagnosis or incorrect treatment of a mental illness, please contact Jodie O’Connor by email by clicking here.