On International suicide prevention day, director of the Institute of Mental Health, Dr Poorna Chandrika, talks about suicide prevention and mental health programmes to be taken up in the city.
Faculty from the Institute of Mental Health, including professors, assistant professors, staff nurses, are visiting schools and colleges in the city to create awareness programmes. Interactive sessions are being conducted to discuss life skill programmes with the youngsters as the most numbers of cases are being reported in youngsters.
What do you opine about the state of stigma on mental health?
I cannot say that there is no stigma now. But we have come a long way in the past 10 years. People are coming forward to discuss mental issues and suicidal contemplations and how to provide mental health aid. Various organisations are working towards the promotion of mental health to spread awareness on how people with suicidal contemplations can be identified and provided with help. The scenario has improved.
How do you think one needs to extend help to those who are under mental distress and contemplating suicide?
We can help someone with mental distress by empathising and talking to them about the issue. Seeking psychological help in such cases is significant to be able to access the care they need. Support of the loved ones and family members can be very important to reduce mental distress.