Optometrist advises adults to take mental health seriously

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An Optometrist, Dr Azuka Osemeke, on Sunday called on Nigerian adults to always take issues of mental health seriously, in order to enable them to be productive and contribute to national development.

Osemeke, who gave the advice in an interview with the Newsmen in Benin City, said that it was imperative for adults to understand their mental health.

According to him, health is a state of mental, social and spiritual wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

He said that mental health was important at every stage of life, from childhood to adulthood.

“Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. It affects how we think, feel, and act.

“It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make healthy choices.

“WHO defines mental health as mental wellbeing in which an individual realises his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make contributions to his or her community.

“In this positive sense, mental health is the foundation for individual wellbeing and the effective functioning of a community,” he said.

The optometrist added that mental health had impact on educational outcome, productivity at work, development of positive personal relationships.

According to the WHO, by the year 2020 depression constituted the second largest disease burden worldwide.

WHO said global burden of mental health would be well beyond the treatment capacities of developed and developing countries.