Climate change causes severe risks to mental health, well-being: WHO

The change in Climate causes severe risks to mental health and well-being, concluding a new WHO policy brief launched on Friday.

The conference recall and show respect for the 50th anniversary of the UN Conference in Stockholm on the Human Environment as well as recognizes the importance of environmental determinants for both physical and mental health. The conference was the first United Nations Conference on the Human Environment.

With the world facing a triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution, governments, civil society, young people as well as the private sector gathered again in Stockholm for an international meeting which is Stockholm+50, to spur urgent action for a healthy planet for the prosperity of all.

Moreover, the WHO policy brief is therefore urging nations to include mental health support in their response to the climate crisis. The findings, in brief, concur with the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which was published in February this year.

The IPPC has disclosed that rapidly increasing climate change is a rising threat to mental health & psychosocial well-being, from emotional pain to anxiety, depression, grief, as well as suicidal behaviour.

Along with this, the WHO defines mental health as “A state of well-being in which every human realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the stresses of life, can work productively & fruitfully, and can contribute to her or his community.”

The WHO director, Dr Maria Neira, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health, mentioned in the statement, “The impacts of climate change are rapidly becoming part of our daily lives, and there is very little dedicated mental health support available for people and communities dealing with climate-related hazards and long-term risk.”

Meanwhile, as previously reported, the COVID-19 pandemic took a heavy toll on mental health and prompted the world health organization to launch a Pan-European Health Coalition in September 2021 in partnership with the European Commission. It has the objective of transforming mental health services and promoting mental health, and preventing mental ill health all over the lifetime.

In the World Health Organisation European Region alone, over 150 million individuals live with a mental health condition. Only one in three individuals living with depression receive the care they require. The pandemic’s lockdowns, school closures, isolation, and joblessness caused only things worse.

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