September 24, 2020

World Mental Health Day in Cayman Islands concentrates on schizophrenia


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wmhd-2014-page-image-text-3From Georgina Wilcox

Friday 10 October is World Mental Health Day.

Schizophrenia affects around 26 million people across the world and is the focus of World Mental Health Day this year.

Despite being a treatable disorder, more than 50% of people with schizophrenia cannot access adequate treatment, and 90% of people with untreated schizophrenia live in the developing world.

From those who face every day of their lives with it, to their families, friends, doctors and even society as a whole, we all have a part to play in raising awareness of schizophrenic illness.

We want to ensure that people with schizophrenia get the best possible care and support to manage their illness and to help them recover.

What is schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia affects how a person thinks, feels, and acts but it’s actually a word that describes a number of symptoms that psychiatry has labelled a disorder. Not everyone with schizophrenia has the same symptoms and the definition of the disorder is wide, including a number of combinations of different things.

Schizophrenia may make it hard for people to judge reality and key features of early psychosis include:

Sleep disturbance

Appetite disturbance

Marked unusual behavior

Feelings that are flat or seem inconsistent to others

Speech that is difficult to follow

Marked preoccupation with unusual ideas

Ideas of reference – thinking unrelated things have a special meaning, ie people on television talking to you

Persistent feelings of unreality

Changes in the way things appear, sound or smell.

Schizophrenia can occur in anyone but it’s a treatable disorder. Long term medication may be necessary for some people but talking therapies and self-help groups can also be effective.

How can you make the most of World Mental Health Day?

See below a list of events leading up to World Mental Health Day here in the Cayman Islands:

Friday 10 October

Panel Discussion (Radio Cayman) – 12:30 p.m.

Dr. Marc Lockhart – Chair of the Mental Health Commission, Behavioral Health Associates Cayman (BHAC), Dr. Taylor Burrowes (Co-Deputy Chair of MHC, The Wellness Centre) and Desiree Miller (Member of Loud Silent Voices).

Movie Night ‘The Soloist’ (Hibiscus Room) – 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. followed by open discussion.

Sunday12 October

Church Service – Church of God Frank Sound. Dr. McGill of PBHS.

Tuesday 14 October

Information session at High Schools (John Gray/ Triple ‘C’ School) Dr. Barnaby.

Wednesday 15 October

Tai Chi demonstration/session – 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Green Area outside entrance to Pink Ladies/Hibiscus Room

For more information on the work of the Mental Health Commission email [email protected]




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