People in emotional distress hardly seek assistance ("Seek psychiatric, not psychic, help for mental illness" by Miss Lee Kay Yan; Sept 5).
Either they may not be aware of the emotional stage they have reached, or they feel that seeking professional help will be perceived as being weak in our society.
Everyone should be aware of some common stress symptoms, including reduced sleep or appetite, excessive alcoholic consumption or even a change in physical behaviour.
While it is common to experience some mood swings in our lives, if the symptoms persist, then it may be time to seek some professional help.
All should be on the lookout for our family members or colleagues. If we find that someone we know is not behaving in his usual manner, perhaps we can take the initiative to find out more in a concerned yet non-pressuring manner. Sometimes, talking it out helps the person and lessens the burden he is carrying.
If the person has suicidal intentions, it is advisable to seek professional assistance immediately.
Lim Lih Mei (Ms)
SOS: 1800-221-4444 (24-hour)
Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800-283-7019
IMH Mobile Crisis Service: 6389-2222 (24-hour)
Care Corner Counselling Centre (Mandarin): 1800-353-5800