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October 05, 2021

October is Australia's National Mental Health Month. It is an important time to raise awareness and promote better mental health for all people of different ages and backgrounds. 

"Mind over matter" is more than just a familiar saying, having a positive mindset will help people achieve a healthy mind and robust physical health to have a good quality of life. It is normal for us to feel lonely and sad at times due to the different challenges and struggles that life throws at us, especially this time of pandemic.  

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 800,000 individuals die every year, which is 1 person every 40 seconds because of suicide and there are many more people who attempt to take their own lives because of the different problems they are facing. Some of them are facing serious mental illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. 

About 4 out of 5 deaths by suicide are committed by men. They are more likely to commit suicide because they are less likely to obtain support for their emotional health for fear of being branded as weak and less manly. Always remember that social support and the care of others are essential. 

In the data released by the Black Dog Institute, a not-for-profit facility for diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of mood disorders. In Australia, about 3 million Australians are living with anxiety and depression. In addition, at least six Australians die from suicide every day and thirty people attempt to take their own lives.  


Warning Signs

It is essential to know the warning signs of suicide for it may help prevent someone you love from taking their own life. Here are some of the telltale signs if a person is suicidal:

  • Talking about death and hopelessness
  • Talking about being trapped or a burden to other people
  • Increased use of alcohol or substance abuse
  • Sleeping too little (insomnia) or too much 
  • Withdrawing from activities and social life 
  • Isolating and saying goodbye to family and friends
  • Suffering from anxiety disorders and depression
  • Displaying extreme mood swings


Tips for Better Mental Health 

Here are some tips and strategies to ward off stress and mental health illnesses in order to reduce the risk of being suicidal:

1. Replace negative thoughts with positive ones. You should practice replacing hate thoughts with loving ones and gloomy thoughts with lifted ones. Practice hope as hopefulness becomes a habit for you to have a happy spirit most of the time. However, it is okay to show what you truly feel. You can have a good cry if you really want to. 

2. It is therapeutic if you vent your emotions through accepting comfort from others, especially among your friends and family. You should rely on your family and friends for it is helpful and healthy for you to start a conversation and share with them how you're feeling, even if you are anxious and depressed. You need to seek support from the people whom you truly trust. Also, be ready to listen to other people when they need a friend during their hard times. Keep in mind that you are not alone and most people also experience fighting off depression at some point in their life. 

3. Reach for support groups and seek professional support. You should break the habit of isolating yourself. You can look for a professional that can help with your mental health, you can ask for help from a psychologist, psychiatrist, social worker or family counselor that you feel comfortable to talk with so you can open up your worries and troubles in life and they can give you professional help. 

4. Have a healthy and happy lifestyle. Exercise regularly, eat a balanced diet, stop smoking and drink less alcohol. Wellness is a lifelong mood-lifter, you should maintain and depend on it, rather than smoking cigarette and drinking alcohol to feel good in a short span of time. You can also renew an interest or learn new things you can enjoy. You can watch movies, listen to music or enroll yourself in a short course.

5. Practice relaxation techniques. You can destress in simple ways just by deep breathing, meditation, and visualization. Breathe in deeply through your nose, you will feel your belly expand. After that, exhale slowly through your mouth. You can meditate by closing your eyes and pick a word or phrase that comforts you. Say it repeatedly to yourself for 5 to 15 minutes. In visualization, you should imagine or visualize a place you'd like to be in.  

You can contact your healthcare practitioner, psychiatrist, psychologist that offers mental health services or support services like:

Beyond Blue 1300 22 46 36
Lifeline 13 11 14
NSW Mental Health Line 1800 011 511
Suicide Call Back Service 1300 65 94 67

Disclaimer: The vitamin health information published on this web page is solely intended for educational purposes. VitaminsOnly strongly recommends consulting your healthcare professional for any questions concerning your health. 

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