International Women’s Day empowers women towards equality. Statistically, there isn’t a significant difference in the number of women who experience mental health issues and the number of men. Women are, according to mentalhealth.org.uk, more likely to suffer from certain conditions, such as anxiety, OCD and eating disorders.
What Causes Mental Health Problems in Women?
The reasons for developing a mental health condition are never straight forward, regardless of gender. However, certain factors in society can be considered to have an impact.
- Women are commonly the main carers in their families, caring for children or other dependent relatives. These responsibilities can be extremely intense, and leave little time for self-care;
- Women are over represented in low income brackets and low status employment, making them more susceptible to poverty;
- Women often juggle lots of responsibilities, being stretched across caring for the family, running the household, supporting their partner and often doing paid work, too;
- Statistics suggest that in over 75% of reported domestic abuse related crimes, the victim was a woman. In many cases, this increases the need to be vigilant even in ones own home;
- One in five women have been sexually assaulted since the age of 16. In the past, media campaigns have been created solely to teach women to keep themselves safe in public. The additional vigilance needed is another pressure to face daily;
- Modern society suggests that women should look and act in a certain way in order to be accepted. This strive for perceived perfection has been known to cause eating disorders, with over 1 million women in the UK suffering from some form of eating disorder.
Empowerment of women seeks to improve a majority of factors causing mental health conditions by promoting equality and reducing risk to women. Once women are truly equal to men, the theory would be that the occurrences of mental health will also be similar.
Treatment for Mental Health Conditions
Treatment for mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety, are often treated with talking therapies first. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, for example, teaches coping tactics to minimise the impact of symptoms. This may include breathing techniques to help ground you during a period of anxiety, or techniques to help you think more positively. Antidepressants are another route that can be taken, although many find the side effects unbearable.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation is a treatment option that is becoming more and more popular around the world, too. There’s no need for medication and no hospital stays, either. Smart TMS see over 80% of our patients experience significant improvements in their symptoms. It’s approved by NICE for the treatment of depression and is so safe that even expecting or breastfeeding mothers can undergo treatment. Learn more about TMS