Ziauddin University has taken the initiative to start Dr Aijaz Fatima Memorial Lectures, titled Common Psychiatric Ailments to pay tribute to the founder of Dr. Ziauddin Hospital.

While sharing awareness on disorders and mental health illness during lecture titled Common Psychiatric Ailments, Dr. Afzal Siddiqui, consultant psychiatrist at Camden Primary Care, part of Mental Health Network in London says, depression and mood fluctuations, which can be mild, moderate, or severe, are the most frequent disorders. Psychotic disorders can lead to suicide, decreased social engagement, and overthinking, all of which can alter a person’s behavior and lead to self-harm. There are many other diseases, such as eating disorders and addictions to substances like alcohol or cannabis, for which basic care therapies are offered in primary care.

There are still many people who refuse to admit that they have a mental illness, and in certain cultures, seeking care for their mental health and attempting to normalize experiences is still a major issue. Mental illness will afflict one out of every four persons. I believe earlier you seek help, better the outcomes, Dr Siddiqui further said.

Discussing the needs of perinatal mental health services, Dr. Pia Ghosh, consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist at Barnet Hospital & North West London Trust said Perinatal mental illness affects 10-20% of new mothers. I believe prevention is a better cure not just for you but for the child and for the future generation. The other reason why we need a perinatal psychiatrist is the poor provision of service to this community.

Explaining postnatal depression which is faced by many parents experience after having a baby, Dr. Ghosh said that it is important to seek help as soon as possible if you think you might be depressed, as your symptoms could last months or get worse and have a significant impact on you, your baby, and your family. In severe depression, the risk of relapse is 26% in those who continued medication and 68% in those who stopped their medication. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and having someone you can talk to and turn to for support are two things you can do to help you stay healthy.

Earlier, Prof. Dr. Rubina Hussain shares a brief unique history of her mother and founder of Dr. Ziauddin Hospital, Dr. Aijaz Fatima with the audience.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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