Stigma is defined as a sign of disgace or descredit, which sets a person apart from others.
MENTAL HEALTH STIGMA CAN BE DIVIDED INTO TWO DISTINCT TYPES:
Social Stigma - a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something, characterized by prejudicial attitudes and discriminating behavior directed towards individuals with mental health problems
Self-Stigma - the internalizing by the mental health sufferer of their perceptions of discrimination The effect- many people with serious mental illness are challenged doubly. On one hand, they struggle with the symptoms and disabilities that result from the disease. On the other, they are challenged by the stereotypes and prejudice that result from misconceptions about mental illness.
Stigma brings experiences and feelings of:
- Misrepresentation in the media
- Reluctance to seek and/or accept necessary help
FAMILIES ARE ALSO AFFECTED BY STIGMA, LEADING TO A LACK OF SUPPORT.
As a result, those who suffer from mental illness are often robbed of the opportunities that define a quality life: good jobs, safe housing, satisfactory health care, and affiliation with a diverse group of people.