South African Government

Let's grow South Africa together

Mental Health Awareness Month

1 to 31 October 2013

The month of October has been declared Mental Health Awareness month with the objective of not only educating the public about mental health but also to reduce the stigma and discrimination that people with mental illness are often subjected to.

An estimated 400 million people worldwide suffer from mental or neurological disorders or from psychosocial problems. These include disorders related to alcohol and drug abuse.

Like physical disorders mental and brain disorders vary in severity. There are those that are:

  • Transient (like an acute stress disorder)
  • Periodic (like bipolar disorder, characterised by periods of exaggerated elation followed by periods of depression)
  • Long lasting and progressive (like Alzheimer’s disease)

Other conditions include:

  • Schizophrenia
  • Dementia,
  • Depressive disorder
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Post traumatic stress disorder


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