Carol Mathias O'Chez, a Psychologist, has spurred discussions on the mental
health of entertainers.
She states that, while society has created enough awareness about mental health,
the conversation has not progressed to include entertainers’ psychological
stressors as they experience unusual types of mental turmoil. The Psychologist
underlined that society easily accepts some celebrity behaviours as normal,
even when such behaviours are harmful to all people.
She spoke in an interview on 3Music TV’s Culture Daily.
“In a lot of ways, we’ve failed a lot of our artistes and entertainers. We haven’t given a lot of focus and attention to their mental health needs. As a country, we’ve come a long way just in general with mental healthcare and having conversations about mental health. We haven’t zeroed in on the industry. Even though we know the pressures they face are unique, it hasn’t gotten the attention it needs to have. And that’s why conversations like this are important. We’ve failed them horribly. In a lot of ways we reward and encourage a lot of harmful and self-harmful behaviours in artistes because of this idea that if you’re a musician and you are using drugs it’s cool as opposed to it being harmful.”
Dr. Carol Mathias O'Chez also highlights that the expense of seeking professional therapy to deal with mental stress is high, hence most entertainers cannot afford it.
“Unfortunately, it’s quite expensive because as a country, the public avenues we have for mental health care aren’t enough and sometimes the quality isn’t great because it doesn’t pay well. So a lot of people end up having to depend on private institutions and organizations and unfortunately, that costs quite a bit of money. An upcoming artiste might not be able to pay 400 to 500 cedis per session weekly which might be what they need to help take care of their mental health.”
To maintain good mental health, Dr. Carol Mathias O'Chez encouraged entertainers and other public figures to focus on their physical health and surround themselves with supportive friends during challenging times.
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