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Sensitisation over despondency: Having a mentally disabled kid

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Credit: http://www.webindia123.com/ (Image for representational purpose only)

By Sreyashi Mazumdar

New Delhi: Wading through the tumultuous reveries of life, a 28-year-old decided to give up; she couldn’t bear the pangs of her little one. Despite trying hard to put up with the situation, her trepidation scuttled her courage to face the harsh reality. Pondering upon the plausible difficulties of her child, she decided to put an end to the situation. She strangled her kid and hung herself from the fan, fending off the reality. This isn’t an isolated case in a nation like India. Even though there has been a drastic change in the field of medical science, societal sensitization is still in the nascent stage. People continue to look down upon a mentally disabled child.

Picture credit: newindianexpress.com
Picture credit: newindianexpress.com

“The main problem is the lack of acceptance. Parents at times find it difficult to accept their children’s mental condition, owing to which many a time they repent their decision; decision of giving birth to a mentally disabled child. There was a time when I used to curse myself for giving birth to an autistic child,” said 45-year Bina Dutta, mother of an autistic boy.

Tears trailing down her eyes, she shared her reveries with her neighbor Priya, “I must have committed a sin in my past life, what wrong did I do.” It has been often seen that parents find it difficult to put up with the societal ostracism their kids often face owing to their mental or physical disability. Things become more complicated once the child enters his or her teenage.

“Lack of proper guidance, lack of medicinal/ educational infrastructure in India, social stigma, societal acceptance,financial burden, emotional disturbance and the implicit disparity which at times becomes quite obvious; these are some of the causes owing to which such children fail at garnering a wholesome experience, both on professional and personal level,” Dr Jyoti Rao, a psychologist and a counsellor, was quoted as saying as she dealt with mentally disabled child for a prolonged period now.

Though there are rehabilitation schools, the problem doesn’t come to an end. “Special schools are a part of rehabilitation process but to begin with as a parent or as a society acceptance is important. Empathy is the key not sympathy. So, more than infrastructure it is the mindset which needs to get overhauled,” she said.

Picture credit : icddelhi.com
Picture credit : icddelhi.com

Financial crunch is one of the major impediments wherein mental or physical ailments lead to untoward incidents like suicides. For instance, in the year 2010, a couple killed their 18-year-old son in East Delhi as they failed to afford his medical expenses thereafter committing suicide, according to a Hindustan Times report.

” Instead of considering it as a disability the best way to deal with such kids are treating your kid as a special child. The moment you start considering your child as a special one, you tend to lay off your frustration and despondence,” said Sister Premila, a spiritual leader and counsellor.

One needs to put oneself into the shoes of people in vicinity of mentally or physically compared individuals, be it in the family or ones school or college. Both infrastructure and sensitization is needed to plummet the level of suicide cases owing to reasons related to mental disability.

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Air Pollution May Affect Physical and Psychological Health: Study

Air pollution may affect psychological health in kids

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Researchers have found that the children who are exposed to a high level of air pollution while growing up, have an increased risk of developing schizophrenia. Pixabay

Air pollution may affect our physical and psychological health in the long run as researchers have found that the children who are exposed to a high level of pollution while growing up, have an increased risk of developing schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that affects how a person thinks, feels, and behaves.

“The study shows that the higher the level of pollution, the higher the risk of schizophrenia. For each 10 µg/m3 (concentration of air pollution per cubic metre) increase in the daily average, the risk of schizophrenia increases by approximately 20 per cent,” said study researcher Henriette Thisted Horsdal from Aarhus University in Denmark.

“Children who are exposed to an average daily level above 25 µg/m3 have an approx. 60 per cent greater risk of developing schizophrenia compared to those who are exposed to less than 10 µg/m3,” Horsdal added.

According to the study, published in the journal JAMA Network Open, the research team included 23,355 people in total, and of these, 3,531 developed schizophrenia.

air pollution
The association between air pollution and schizophrenia cannot be explained by a higher genetic liability in people who grow up in areas with high levels of air pollution. Pixabay

“The risk of developing schizophrenia is also higher if you have a higher genetic liability for the disease. Our data shows that these associations are independent of each other,” Horsdal said.

The association between pollution and schizophrenia cannot be explained by a higher genetic liability in people who grow up in areas with high levels of air pollution, the researcher said.

According to the study, the researchers combine genetic data from iPSYCH with air pollution data from the Department of Environmental Science for the results.

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Though the results demonstrate an increased risk of schizophrenia when the level of air pollution during childhood increases, the researchers cannot comment on the cause.

Instead they emphasise that further studies are needed before they can identify the cause of this association, they concluded. (IANS)