10 Common Myths About Mental Illness

This week was Mental Illness Awareness Week, and to spread awareness, the Niagara Branch of the CMHA shared the following myths and truths about mental illness.


Statistically speaking, it is highly likely that we all know someone who has experienced a mental illness at some point in their life, yet there are still harmful attitudes around mental illnesses that fuel the stigma and make it harder for people to reach out for help.

Statistically speaking, it is highly likely that we all know someone who has experienced a mental illness at some point in their life, yet there are still harmful attitudes around mental illnesses that fuel the stigma and make it harder for people to reach out for help.


Myth #1: “Mental illnesses aren’t real illnesses.”

Myth #1: "Mental illnesses aren’t real illnesses."


Myth #2: “Mental illnesses will never affect me.”

Myth #2: "Mental illnesses will never affect me."


Myth #3: “Mental illnesses are just an excuse for poor behaviour.”

Myth #3: "Mental illnesses are just an excuse for poor behaviour."


Myth #4: “Bad parenting causes mental illnesses.”

Loved ones can play a big part in helping a person recover, work towards their goals, and stay well.

Myth #4: "Bad parenting causes mental illnesses." Loved ones can play a big part in helping a person recover, work towards their goals, and stay well.


Myth #5: “People with mental illnesses are violent and dangerous.”

Changing attitudes and behaviours takes time. Help spread the facts and reduce the stigma surrounding mental illnesses.

Myth #5: "People with mental illnesses are violent and dangerous." Changing attitudes and behaviours takes time. Help spread the facts and reduce the stigma surrounding mental illnesses.


Myth #6: “People don’t recover from mental illness.”

Myth #6: "People don’t recover from mental illness."


Myth #7: “People who experience mental illnesses are weak and can’t handle stress.”

Myth #7: "People who experience mental illnesses are weak and can’t handle stress."


Myth #8: “People who experience mental illnesses can’t work.”

Myth #8: "People who experience mental illnesses can’t work."


Myth #9: “Kids can’t have a mental illness like depression. Those are adult problems.”

Sometimes it can be difficult to understand how challenging children’s problems can be because we tend to look at them through adult eyes. It’s important to remind ourselves that, while children’s problems may seem unimportant to us at times, they can be overwhelming to them.

Myth #9: "Kids can’t have a mental illness like depression. Those are adult problems." Sometimes it can be difficult to understand how challenging children's problems can be because we tend to look at them through adult eyes. It's important to remind ourselves that, while children's problems may seem unimportant to us at times, they can be overwhelming to them.


Myth #10: “Everyone gets depressed as they grow older. It’s just part of aging.”

Myth #10

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