Do you have a family member who refuses to go to a doctor unless they’re profusely bleeding or in a severe situation? Or are you the family member someone would point to? That’s on a visual or physical level… but what about when symptoms don’t show up so obviously?
This month serves to acknowledge and talk about the challenges certain cultures/ communities face about managing their mental health specifically.
– Stigma: There’s a stigma that needs to be broken. It’s NOT a sign of weakness or reason to be ashamed if you don’t feel well mentally/emotionally.
– Costs: Health care can be costly and a stressor for many people across the country, but studies show that Hispanic, Black, and some Asian populations have lower levels of coverage for health than the white population in the same areas.
– Location: There’s not enough providers for mental health care nationwide, but people who live in rural areas are worse off than people who have public transportation or ride shares to help them get to doctor visits.
– Mistrust: Often, people in marginalized communities and health care providers have a strained relationship because of friends/family members being mistreated in the past or people being uninformed/misinformed. Others were denied basic health services.
What can we do about it? Talk about it more with our loved ones. Raise awareness. You can hold your own spaces to talk with them about how they’re doing. You could plan a group outing to take a yoga or other exercise class together or nature walks. Remind people that little steps like this matter, & encourage them to talk to their primary doctors on wanting more help managing their mental health.
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