November 1 to 7 is National Mental Health Week in Thailand, designated so since 1989, during which the Ministry of Public Health holds special activities. Yet only a handful of Thais are aware we have a week dedicated to raising public awareness about our psychological well-being.
The situation is actually not surprising. Not only do we Thais lack knowledge about this particular week, a fair number still have misconceptions about people suffering from mental illness.
Statistics from the Thai Health Promotion Foundation reveal an alarming figure: an estimated 12 million Thais suffer from some sort of mental sickness or psychological condition, be it depression, anxiety or even a mild mental complaint such as stress. And this accounts for about 18% of the population.
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