It seems that the quote of the day for this year has been, “Just get over it”, followed up closely with the looming question of, “Why can’t you just let it go?” As the entire world has watched marches, protests and general disruption in the psyche of American society, I think more people than ever can finally agree that this isn’t just about a handful of bitter, angry people sitting in a corner, complaining about how they didn’t get their way.
Yet, so many times, those who are unwilling to understand seem to brush off these serious shifts in the psychological recipes of the way people are now deciding to deal with things that anger them, disappoint them and cause them to experience real fear. These are moments and events that are causing people to realize that they can’t do this alone and, resoundingly, that they are NOT ready to “just let it go”.
If we have been shown any truth this past year, it is that we are now living in a time where people are finally ready to speak out about what troubles them, and they are not afraid to ask for help. With the sad loss of Carrie Fisher, we not only bid farewell to a beloved character from Star Wars, but we said goodbye to a world-class champion for mental healthcare. She openly and proudly taught the world that it was alright to acknowledge your battles with conditions like bipolar disease, addiction and alcoholism, helping to lift the stigma once associated with receiving therapy or undergoing other forms of psychiatric treatment.
With these changes underway, and with more and more celebrities stepping up to encourage us to break the chains that have restricted those with mental disease and addictions from speaking up, what can this mean for mental healthcare in our country? Are we finally embarking upon an age where a person who is experiencing anger, depression or anxiety will visit a therapist, just as an individual who has a toothache will schedule an appointment with a dentist?
Integrated Care might just be the new healthcare system to incorporate just that. This new model incorporates two types of care, typically mental and physical healthcare. This makes it easier for patients to be screened for mental health disorders, often from the office of their primary care physician. Just imagine how many people suffering from mental health disorders can finally be diagnosed and administered treatment?
There will also surely be changes for therapists and others working in the mental healthcare industry. To handle the steady flow of patients who may seek treatment during this tumultuous time, offices will become more streamlined, and creative new ways to save time and even see more patients throughout the course of a business day will be discovered.
Plus, we are also seeing an emergence of support groups to help, no matter which side of the fence you happen to be sitting on. Better yet, people are listening, right on the streets of some of the country’s busiest cities, with projects where those passing by can literally just sit down and get a load off their chests. If there was ever a time that something of nature was needed on such a grand scale, it is most definitely now.
Many more scenarios are yet to play out, and in the days ahead, we will see how this spring emerges, and how these changes will affect the way that we, as a country, view mental healthcare. But one thing is clear. No one is “just letting it go” anymore, and that just might be a step in the right direction.
Angela Ash is the Content Manager for Mentegram, a mental healthcare technology company that is bridging the gap between patients and their therapists. They have helped over 200 therapists provide better care to more than 1,500 of their patients.
Angela is also a professional article writer and editor, specializing in online content and authoritative blog topics. Her additional therapy-related content may be found at https://mentegram.com/blog.