Deepika Padukone was felicitated with Crystal Award at the recently-held World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos for her contribution in mental health awareness. Later, the actress had a conversation about mental health with Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General, World Health Organization.
Later, Tedros shared a picture from their chat on Twitter and wrote, "Delighted to discuss #mentalhealth with @deepikapadukone at #wef20. Your openness and vulnerability are helping others to seek help and helping to break down stigma. @WHO look forward to working closely with you. There is no health without mental health. #LetsTalk." Deepika replied back, "Thank You @DrTedros for your warmth and generosity and we look to working together in our efforts to de-stigmatise mental illness and creating awareness regarding mental health."
Thank You @DrTedros for your warmth and generosity and we look to working together in our efforts to de-stigmatise mental illness and creating awareness regarding mental health.@TLLLFoundation @WHO https://t.co/hxxQlWAVPo— Deepika Padukone (@deepikapadukone) January 21, 2020
During her chat with Dr Tedros, the Chhapaak actress opened up about her battle with clinical depression.
Deepika Padukone On Depression: 'I Fainted; Luckily The House Help Came & Saw Me On Floor'
The actress revealed, "Mental illness happened to me when I had least expected it. I was at a professional high, my movies were doing great and I was in an amazing relationship. Everything was going just perfect. One morning when I woke up and I felt all was well, I fainted. Luckily the house help came and saw me on the floor. I was taken to a doctor and I was told it was nothing and probably just some blood pressure fluctuation or something like physical tiredness. Those were the first physical signs. For a long time, I just felt like sleeping, not going out, not meeting people."
She further added, "Luckily, my mother had come to my place and when my parents were packing, I just started crying. She asked me what was it and I had no answer. At that time, my mother told me that I probably needed professional help and that's how I began consulting a psychiatrist."
Deepika & Her Family Initially Didn't Feel Like Telling Everyone About Her Diagnosis
Talking about it, the actress continued, "After I was diagnosed with a clinical depression regarding my mental health, I had to even lie when someone asked me how was I doing. I would say, I'm great, though I was actually terrible."
She added, "As I began on my path of recovery, I also understood the stigma attached with the mental health and the need to go public with it. Imagine what would have happened, if my mother had not said that I should a professional help for my problem. I felt that I should do something to help others with their signs and symptoms and that was the reason for going public with my illness and then setting up the Live Love Laugh foundation."
Deepika Says It's Important To Share Your Feelings With Somebody
The actress stressed on the need to be aware about mental health and said, "Are you feeling sadness and a low for a long period of time? You need to understand sadness is transient and depression is for a long period of time. It is very important to share with somebody around you about how you are feeling. It is also important that the people around you don't dismiss it as attention-seeking or some small thing. It is important for caregivers to encourage people to seek help."
Deepika On How Parents Are Uncomfortable With Taking Their Kids For Professional Help
"At times, it is other way round too when parents want to take, but children do not want to seek medical help or consultation. I want every person experiencing mental illnesses to know that you are not alone - because there are no obvious physical symptoms. You feel like you are the only one going though this, and it comes with a lot of guilt."
The actress said that for humanity, people must realise that there are some fundamental things that need to change such as a notion that men are not supposed to have mental illness.