Effects Of Stigma Surrounding Mental Illness Essay

1284 Words Feb 24th, 2016 6 Pages
Mental illness has been a hot topic in recent news. From Sandy Hook to the Aurora movie theatre shooting, effects of mental illness has sparked fierce debate and a negative stigma surrounding the issue. However, only 59.6% of individuals with a mental illness report receiving treatment, as often those with mental disorders are seen as “dangerous, unpredictable, responsible for their illness, or incompetent” (Corrigan, Druss, and Perlick). With so much riding on the issue, a question needs to be addressed: to what extent does stigma surrounding mental illness affect the way patients are treated in health care and society? To explore the effects of stigma surrounding mental illness, it is essential to first understand the science behind mental disorders. Everything originates at the building block of the nervous system: the neuron. “Brain Basics” is a public awareness initiative by the National Institute of Mental Health, a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. According to “Brain Basics”, neurons are specialized to pass on messages onto the next in order for us to function. When a neuron receives a signal, an electrical impulse travels down the axon to terminal branches at the end of the cell (Myers 56). From here, neurons send messages across the synapse, the junction between neurons, onto the next through chemical messengers called neurotransmitters (“Brain Basics”). Once this process is done, the sending neuron absorbs excess neurotransmitters in a…

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