January 30th is Bell Let’s Talk Day – Stigma & Epilepsy
January 30th is Bell Let’s Talk Day, when social media will be used to raise funds to support mental health initiatives. On this day, Bell will contribute 5¢ towards mental health initiatives for:
- Every text and call on the Bell network
- Every use of the #BellLetsTalk hashtag on social media
- Every view of the Bell Let’s Talk Day video on Facebook
- Every use of the Bell Let’s Talk Day geofilter on Snapchat
Bell Let’s Talk Day not only raises funds for mental health initiatives, but also helps to increase the awareness of mental health issues and their associated stigmas in society. This gives us an excellent opportunity to talk about the relationship between stigma and epilepsy.
As epilepsy is still misunderstood by many, there are misconceptions, outdated views or inaccurate information about epilepsy in society, which can lead to increased stigma towards people with epilepsy.
Stigma is an immense challenge for people with epilepsy and can lead to significant mental health issues such as depression and stress, which can, in turn, create barriers for people with epilepsy to live full, positive lives.
Therefore, it is important to combat the stigma surrounding epilepsy. Here are our tips on how to do that:
- Choose your words carefully and remember that some words can have a negative connotation
- For example, it is stigmatizing and demeaning to call someone “epileptic” because only seizures are “epileptic”
- Instead, you should refer to them as “a person with epilepsy
- People may have negative attitudes towards epilepsy simply because they do not understand it
Talk About It:
- Talking with others and sharing your epilepsy story can help in challenging stereotypes and fighting stigma
- You can also talk about your epilepsy journey at one of our support groups:
- Raising awareness of epilepsy is very important to combat the stigma towards people living with epilepsy
- Use the “I AM A VOICE” campaign, which is a BC Epilepsy Society initiative to decrease stigma and help people become more aware of epilepsy
- Being a voice for someone with epilepsy and helping to advocate for them in society can also be a way to decrease stigma
It is important to combat the stigma associated with epilepsy to allow people living with epilepsy to live full, positive lives. Follow the Bell Let’s Talk initiative on Twitter here, Instagram here, and Facebook here. Find out more about Bell Let’s Talk Day here.
When you participate this year in Bell Let’s Talk Day, be sure to mention how stigma and mental health affects epilepsy in your posts and use the BC Epilepsy Society's "I AM A VOICE" campaign to raise awareness of epilepsy!