Clinician Advice: Stigma, discrimination and mental health

Teresa Chan, Coolminds clinical advisor answers some hard-hitting questions youth have about stigma and discrimination and its association with mental health.

Interview questions:

  • My past experiences of being discriminated against have really impacted my self-esteem, and I often feel insecure. What are some ways I can heal from this and gain confidence?
  • What are some coping mechanisms I could try when I am affected by mental health stigma?
  • How do racism and discrimination impact a young person’s mental health?
  • How can young people do to combat prejudice and discrimination in society?

Excerpts from the interview :

Don’t isolate yourself. When you struggle with your mental health you may be hesitant to share this with anyone. However, your friends, family, teachers and coaches could offer you compassion and support. Reach out to those you trust, and surround yourself with supportive people.

These might seem like small things, but it is important to recognise and learn to appreciate all the good things about yourself, and the reasons why people appreciate you for being who you are.

Young people are particularly vulnerable to the damaging effects of racism and discrimination. A recent study* revealed a strong and consistent link between race-based discrimination and negative child health and wellbeing outcomes such as anxiety, depression and psychological distress

Check out the booklet to read the full interview!