Throughout the 2000s, talking about mental health seemed to rise to the forefront of conversations. From high profile individuals opening up about their own experiences in interviews to sharing social media posts with self-care ideas, discussion about mental health became increasingly acceptable.
Going to therapy began to move away from being taboo, and the stigma around mental wellness began to fade.
Unfortunately, despite this positive momentum, many Black and Brown communities still battle with the stigma of seeking mental assistance and continue to suffer from poor mental health outcomes.
According to researchers and psychologists who focus on mental health disparities, the experiences of BIPOC individuals contribute to the mental health treatment gap.
The Stigma Surrounding Mental Health
There is a cultural stigma surrounding mental health care in communities of color playing a crucial role in seeking treatment. People of Color often have difficulty admitting that they are struggling, whether because of the perceived weakness of those with mental conditions, the denial that they even exist, or other negative stereotypes.
Destigmatizing the importance of mental health and wellness in the BIPOC communities is the first step. Individuals must understand that, like physical fitness, taking care of your mind and your emotions is an essential part of your overall wellness.
Lack of Health Insurance
Obtaining good health care coverage continues to be a challenge for many, but the Black and Brown individuals are uninsured by inadequate health care plans at higher rates.
This lack of insurance makes it highly unlikely for affected individuals to seek appropriate treatment, especially when the issue they’re struggling with isn’t a physical ailment. The inaccessibility of high-quality services addressing these areas stops treatment from being sought out.
Lack of Diversity & Representation
Another barrier that stops People of Color from seeking proper treatment for mental wellness is low BIPOC representation in medical fields. Access to culturally competent care is often crucial for treatment success, and mental health providers need to understand the influence of culture on one’s mental health.
Further, significant research and studies have traditionally left out People of Color and their life experiences. The lack of research is problematic as it feeds into the disparity gap and impacts assessment, diagnoses, and treatment.
All of this has the potential to lead to a distrust of medical professionals by the BIPOC communities. Fortunately, acknowledging this and encouraging People of Color to pursue careers in mental health and wellness can help bring about positive change. Thankfully, more and more mental health professionals are becoming resources that specifically address the concerns and experiences of BIPOC.
Taking care of your mental health is an integral part of anyone’s wellness routine. Trauma experienced by communities of color due to discrimination most definitely plays a role in mental wellness and should not be ignored! Still, it’s important to remember that including cultural identity as a factor in your treatment can be the difference between continuing difficulties and success.
The importance of including diverse cultural perspectives is our #1 priority at ysp Digital Agency. Let us help you move your messaging in this direction to create a marketing strategy that resonates with everyone. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how we guide you through the journey to be more inclusive with influencer and social marketing campaigns from content Creators of Color.