In recent years, many high profile actors, politicians and athletes have opted to take the step of disclosing their battles with mental disorders to the general public.
In doing so, these people have elevated public awareness of conditions such as bipolar disorders, depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD). In some cases, the decisions by these public figures to reveal their struggles have been the catalyst for everyday people to seek help for their own mental conditions.
Public Figures Reveal Mental Health Issues
After a stressful period in which she was caring for her cancer-stricken husband actor Michael Douglass, Catherine Zeta-Jones decided to check herself into a mental health treatment center. Zeta-Jones had reached a point where she was fluctuating between periods of joy and deep depression and knew she had to take additional action to address her condition. As a result of her decision to seek treatment, the famous actress discovered she had bipolar II disorder.
Not long ago, comedian and game show host Howie Mandel was officially diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and ADHD. After years of dealing with racing thoughts, an inability to sit still and obsessing over germs, Mandel decided to get help. After seeing improvements in his mental health with ADHD treatment and OCD treatment that included the use of psychotherapy and medication, Mandel is now a spokesman for these disorders and fights to diminish stigmas attached to them.
Mental health issues surrounding professional athletes have also come to the forefront. Reigning National League MVP Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds and boxer Mike Tyson both endured bouts of severe depression. Additionally, a Duke University study found that nearly half of all U.S. presidents have at some point battled mood disorders that include depression.
Mental illness is not something an individual should be embarrassed about or feel they have to keep secret. Numerous agencies and mental health centers offer treatment that allows individuals struggling with mental disorders to live normal and productive lives.