Sikkim: An awareness programme on mental health was held at Kabrey senior secondary school ground today.
The programme was organised by Namthang Block Administrative Centre in association with Self-Help Groups (SHG) of Karek and Nagi villages. The programme was aimed at eliminating social misstatements on mental health, psychiatric problems and de-addiction issues.
Rural Development OSD Bimal Kharel was present as the chief guest of the day. Also present were SCPCR chairperson Roma Tamang, Poultry Board chairman Krishna Gurung, NHPC vice chairman Harish Chandra Chettri, Namthang BDO Yogen Syangden, panchayats, representatives from Forest department, police outpost and Namthang health facility.
Teachers, parents and students of different schools from in and around Namchi attended the programme.
Dr. Pinkey Bhutia and Dr. Sonam P. Bhutia from Psychiatry department of Singtam district hospital and Premius Bhutia from Darjeeling were present as the resource persons.
Dr. Sonam P. Tongden spoke on mental health topics covering depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. She said age is not the factor for mental health issues.
She mentioned that not all mental health problems need medication. Many of them can be treated with simple counselling alone, she added.
Sikkim People Addicted To Brown Sugar
Speaking to the teachers, she urged them to take special care of students who collapse occasionally, have inability to learn, have different playing patterns, autism, hyperactive behaviour and ADHD symptoms, and bring them to psychiatrists for counselling.
Dr. Pinky Bhutia, while speaking on addiction, said Singtam has high number of individuals addicted to brown sugar including both young and old.
However, addiction cannot be promptly controlled in short period of time, whoever wants to stop consuming will go through various phases, and relapse prevention can take a lot of hard work. She also shared the various effects of smoking and consumption of other tobacco products along with consumption of marijuana.
Premius Bhutia, sharing his life experiences, informed that addiction to drugs and alcohol is a global disease as per World Health Organization.
Blaming and shaming the active and passive consumers and society eventually create more flaws in an individual especially those who are going through de-addiction process.
The chief guest gave more stress to parenting, showing the proper conduct of living to the children is far more effective than advices alone, he stated.
A free general health check-up and distribution of medicines was also organised by ALKEM pharmaceutical company.