Many parents fail to recognise serious mental disorders like schizophrenia in their children, says a specialist

Awareness must be created among people about various psychological problems at an early, senior psychiatrists and vice-principal of Andhra Medical College N.N. Raju said while inaugurating an awareness-cum-medical camp for the mentally ill by Maharshi Foundation near Mecca Masjid junction here on Sunday.

Alcohol addiction was leading to many antisocial activities in the society, he said. “Domestic violence could be avoided if intervened at the right time.

Many parents fail to recognise serious mental disorders like schizophrenia in their children ”, he said.

Majority of people who commit suicide leave some indication of their intentions and if people could pick up the clues many young lives could be saved, he said. Dr. Raju explained the signs and symptoms in children suffering from autism and attention deficit disorder and the pathetic situation of those families who have some member suffering from serious mental disorder.

He suggested some methods to manage the situation. Professional help was also needed. More than 50 patients and their care givers attended the camp. Three short films on schizophrenia, insomnia and depression were screened. Drugs were distributed free along with counselling to the family members and care givers. With increase in stress and strain in present day life, the prevalence of mental illnesses was on the rise, Dr. Raju said.

Anxiety, depression, suspicion, doubts over character of the spouse, abnormal behaviour, suicides, homicides, antisocial activities, addiction to alcohol and drugs, behavioural problems in children and inexplicable physical symptoms are all indication of a disturbed mind. The biggest hurdle in keeping the abnormality in check is lack of awareness among public. Social stigma and inaccessible facilities were other hurdles, he added.

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