Psychiatry: Its Importance in Maintaining our Mental Health

Whenever we hear the word 'psychiatry', we always associate it with people with mental illness.  We also associate psychiatry with expensive medical treatment and of less importance in our overall health maintenance.  Psychiatry is a medical field that is not popular and only few doctors specialize in.  With the increasing number of suicide cases and people experiencing clinical depression, people are now starting to be aware on the importance of psychiatry and how it can help us deal with our mental and emotional problems.

There are 700 psychiatrists and about 1,000 psychiatric nurses in the Philippines.  This number of mental health practitioners is not enough to cater to all Filipinos who are needing treatment for their mental illness.  Apart from that, Philippines also lack facilities and institutions which will cater to people with mental illness.  Sadly, there is a stigma that only people with severe mental disorders should be the one to seek medical treatment.  We do not see the importance of prevention on the early stages of mental illness.  

The number of people needing medical attention due to mental illness is increasing.  Sadly, mental illness treatment is very costly and a lot of families cannot afford such treatment.  Normally, a consultation with a psychiatrist costs Php2,000-3,000 per session apart from the medicines a mentally ill patient has to take.  With this, families just resort into locking their mentally-ill family member in their own homes.  In addition to that, the family is ashamed to be ridiculed by the people around them for having a mentally-ill member that is why they resort to such harsh and inhumane supervision.  


With the recent passing of Mental Health Law in the Philippines, people are given hope for receiving better services in treating mental illnesses and better understanding of those people who are needing medical help.  You may check the provisions of the law HERE.  

I feel hopeful that with the passing of Mental Health Law, Filipinos will now be more open to medical treatments for mental illness and to be more sensitive to the signs that a certain individual needs professional help.  The Mental Health Law will somehow encourage general medical practitioners to specialize in psychiatry to help our fellow citizens in improving their mental health.

Should seeing a psychiatrist is a challenge for you, you may opt to have an appointment with an online psychiatrist instead.  You may check HERE to learn more about consulting with an online psychiatrist.

It is very important for us to be always in touch with reality and for us to be able to handle life's challenges without breaking down.  

Should you need someone to listen to, I'm here to listen.  Do not hesitate to send me an email or drop a message on my Facebook page to pour out your concerns.  God bless!

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