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Sunday, 15 December, 2002, 09:59 GMT
Mental health issues raised
Depressed woman
Most Scots know someone with mental health problems
Two out of three Scots know someone who has been diagnosed with a mental health problem, according to a survey.

Scotland's first survey into public attitudes to mental health also showed one in four people have been diagnosed themselves.

It is estimated that one in four people in Scotland will suffer from a mental illness at some point in their lives.

These range from stress and anxiety to depression, anorexia and schizophrenia.

Depressed man
Mental health appears to be stigmatised

A stigma of mental illness still exists, with half of those questioned saying if they had a mental health problem they would not want other people to know about it.

The report published by the Scottish Executive found that young people were more likely to be tolerant of those with mental health problems than people over the age of 75.

Health Minister Malcolm Chisholm said: "The findings in all the areas addressed by the survey provide us with useful information for the work being undertaken on mental health issues in Scotland, both nationally and locally.

"There are some encouraging findings from the parts of the survey which deals with people's attitudes towards those who experience mental health problems.

"However, there was also evidence of stigma experienced by those with mental health problems and the work of the See Me campaign, which I launched in October, seeks to address this."

Verbal abuse

The findings of the Well, What do you think, A National Scottish Survey of Public Attitudes to Mental Health, found 71% of respondents said someone close to them had been diagnosed with a mental health problem at some time.

Twenty seven percent of those had personally experienced a mental health problem.

The survey revealed 44% of respondents found that media portrayal of people with mental health problems was generally more negative than positive.

A third of those who had personally experienced a mental health problem reported difficulties, such as discrimination at work or verbal abuse in public.

The best health was enjoyed by those people who reported the less stress in their lives, people under the age of 55 and those living in affluent areas.

See also:

08 Oct 02 | Scotland
17 Sep 02 | Scotland
02 Sep 02 | Scotland
29 Nov 01 | Scotland
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