Welcome Guest! The IOSH forums are a free resource to both members and non-members. Login or register to use them

Postings made by forum users are personal opinions. IOSH is not responsible for the content or accuracy of any of the information contained in forum postings. Please carefully consider any advice you receive.

Notification

Icon
Error

Options
Go to last post Go to first unread
Tim Briggs  
#1 Posted : 10 November 2021 11:49:50(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Tim Briggs

Many people use the term Mental Health without explaining if they are referring to Mental Ill Health or Good Mental Health which can be confusing for a reader. It is an important topic as poor psychological health can affect any one of us at any time. 

There is a great stigma attached to the phrase Mental Ill Health and many people wrongly associate people with poor mental health as being dangerous or unstable. In the UK we have come a long way to beating any stigma attached to the term mental ill health but the fear of, and stigmatisation of people still exists and I believe we need to do more.

Is it now time to start using another descriptor, and using the term "Psychological Illness"  or "Psychological Ill Health" which has much less of a stigma attached when discussing this topic?

I also believe we need people to start realising that poor physical health and poor psychological ill health are inextricably entwined, hence the Health and Social Care Act of 2012 states we must have parity in treating all forms of ill health. I believe without addressing "Health" in its fullness we will be no where near removing that stigma. 

Just wondered what peoples views are?

Edited by user 10 November 2021 11:56:47(UTC)  | Reason: clarity

Roundtuit  
#2 Posted : 10 November 2021 12:48:58(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

A lot of companies seem to choose "mental well being" and "wellness" with respect to positive health of the mind, again separating this from health of the body.

This too is probably incorrect as the common mental disorders are never really a binary diagnosis (for example having or not having TB) and more of a spectrum where individuals are comfortable at different points - some with OCD will perpetually sort, clean & tidy others merely adjust a crooked picture.

Psychological unfortunately carries negative association in society of "Psycho" along with "shrinks" and "asylums" perpetuated by many a horror film and computer game since Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 classic.

thanks 2 users thanked Roundtuit for this useful post.
Kate on 10/11/2021(UTC), Kate on 10/11/2021(UTC)
Roundtuit  
#3 Posted : 10 November 2021 12:48:58(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

A lot of companies seem to choose "mental well being" and "wellness" with respect to positive health of the mind, again separating this from health of the body.

This too is probably incorrect as the common mental disorders are never really a binary diagnosis (for example having or not having TB) and more of a spectrum where individuals are comfortable at different points - some with OCD will perpetually sort, clean & tidy others merely adjust a crooked picture.

Psychological unfortunately carries negative association in society of "Psycho" along with "shrinks" and "asylums" perpetuated by many a horror film and computer game since Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 classic.

thanks 2 users thanked Roundtuit for this useful post.
Kate on 10/11/2021(UTC), Kate on 10/11/2021(UTC)
stevedm  
#4 Posted : 10 November 2021 12:54:40(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
stevedm

There is only a stigma attached to it if you let it...we have always used thne term psychological injury/illness for identified cases....nothing new there...our occupational health and wellbeing covers the whole body....besides mental can be good things...'that is mental'  sorry slang scottish doesn't come across in text very well...the more people identify the term as derogatory or stigmatised the more people will associate it as a distrepectful term....

thanks 2 users thanked stevedm for this useful post.
Tim Briggs on 10/11/2021(UTC), Brian Hagyard on 11/11/2021(UTC)
peter gotch  
#5 Posted : 10 November 2021 13:17:59(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Tim, to be honest I think the terminology is much less important than organisational approaches.

At present the vogue is for sticking plaster solutions - mental health first aiders, Employee Assistance Programs (I deliberately use the American spelling) and such like.

If it was any other work-related risk, we would apply the General Principles of Protection and look at the underlying causes such as poor management, rather than waiting for people's health to be damaged and then acting.

There are a number of reasons why this is far from standard in UK plc - one is the difficulty in sometimes determining whether the damaging stressors comes from work, outside or a mix - however, this does not mean that employers should not be assessing the work-related stress risks and acting to mitigate those, rather than patching people up later.

....and I am far from convinced that OSH practitioners trying to pretend that they are psychologists (except for the very few who are) is helpful.

thanks 3 users thanked peter gotch for this useful post.
Tim Briggs on 10/11/2021(UTC), stevedm on 10/11/2021(UTC), Brian Hagyard on 11/11/2021(UTC)
Tim Briggs  
#6 Posted : 10 November 2021 13:46:45(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Tim Briggs

As I research this, the matter of attitudes and descriptive words become very evident. One piece of research found children had 200 different ways of describing psychological ill health. It is peoples attitudes and the words used to describe adverse effects that is causing the stigmatisation, even including those that should know better. This affects how other people may view or deal/not deal with the topic. Many researchers do comment about negative attitudes and descriptive words contributing to stigmatisation. 

Too clear that too many are not connecting all aspects of health intinsically. And how groups makes decisions also affects how the topic is treated and viewed, especially if there are strong adverse opinions being foisted upon the less stronger members of the group.

No one is asking for practitioners to become Dr's Psychologists but to become more aware. I believe that it is only by challenging and helping people to become better educated will anything really change. I do agree that organisations could have better approaches though. 

Edited by user 10 November 2021 13:48:24(UTC)  | Reason: clarity

thanks 1 user thanked Tim Briggs for this useful post.
peter gotch on 10/11/2021(UTC)
A Kurdziel  
#7 Posted : 10 November 2021 14:24:21(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

I think Peter is right; psychological health implies that this is an issue that can only be dealt with by psychologists or other professionals rather than something that we all should be getting  involved with. And as Roundtuit has said it often gets  mixed up with mental wellbeing or mental resilience which sometimes comes across as implying an expectation that you should be able to maintain a happy smiley front at all times., having been given the right training.

Tim Briggs  
#8 Posted : 10 November 2021 14:38:15(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Tim Briggs

Hi Kurdziel (Sorry for surname use I dont know what A stands for). 

Itneresting I read Peters comment differently. So thanks for putting me right. Also shows the importance of words and how they are recieved.

firesafety101  
#9 Posted : 10 November 2021 19:34:57(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
firesafety101

The fire and rescue service experience employees with PTSD Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

There are some with PTSD who think it should be called Post Traumatic Steress Disease.

That would make it a more medical sounding illness.

Users browsing this topic
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.