Mental illness is a taboo topic until it takes a life



As the world connects on a global scale digital natives have been able to share their opinions and experiences allowing for a better understanding of previously unmentioned issues. A prevalent advancement is the detachment of a certain stigma against mental illnesses. However it seems that it is only discussed on a major scale when someone has resorted to taking their own life.

The discussion has been reignited due to the tragic death of Robin Williams who allegedly took his own life after fighting an ongoing battle with depression.

Robin Williams is unfortunately a great example of why mental illness has a stigma attached to it. But not the stigma so fervently discussed. In a 2011 interview with the Project in Australia, Williams discussed the worlds expectations of him.

“People expect me to kind of be on all the time. A lady walked up to me at an airport one time and I forget where it was and she said ‘be zany’,” he said.

This shows what kind of guilt is attached with mental illness. Not only was he suffering an inner anguish, and constantly attempting to understand his impalpable emotions, but he also had millions of people, including both fans and critics, expecting him to be happy and funny all of the time due to his established career. This creates an added emotion of guilt due to not being able to feel funny, happy, and on all of the time.

While everyone believes that the stigma attached to mental illnesses is the perceived notion of being a cop out or people just being “insensitive”, now that it is highly recognised that it is a serious condition many believe the stigma has been removed. However with this acknowledgement another kind of stigma has been attached, which involves many believing if they lead a comfortable lifestyle, have a great family, and beautiful friends they must be happy. If they are funny, or iconic, or a celebrity, they must be happy. If they are attractive, skinny and have a great personality, they must be happy.


Mental illness can affect anyone from any walk of life and despite a pleasing exterior view their interior may not be so gratifying. Anyone could be suffering an inner battle, so to remove this stigma understanding what meets the eye may be a lie is key.

I am unsure what kind of emotions Williams was battling but I am sure that I myself suffered from a battle with mental illness. For six to seven years I suffered with an eating disorder which consumed my life. Although I had an amazing family, a large group of friends, and was given unlimited opportunities, I was still ultimately overtaken by this mental illness and I could not help how I felt despite the logic being written out for me. Feelings and logic are two different things which many do need to recognise.


Robin Williams’ 2011 Interview on the Project, Australia

My experience with overcoming an eating disorder







Review: (Coco) Nuts about oil pulling

When you hear the name ‘oil pulling’ it is hard not to envision it as a new method for Bunnings’ do-it-yourselfers but in reality it is actually an ancient dental technique that has quickly become a new obsession for health junkies. Although all of the cool kids with their jars filled with green smoothies and Instagram photos featuring acai bowls are yet to catch on I have noticed that a lot of health addicts praise this method.

So what in the world is oil pulling?  While it sounds odd, it is actually quite simple and only requires a tablespoon of any vegetable oil, I prefer coconut, to be swished around the mouth for 20 minutes.


This technique is derived from ancient Ayurvedic medicine with the idea toxins in your mouth are poisonous. Sounds like an old wives tale right? Well after doing countless hours of research and reading hundreds of testimonials I was convinced to try it out. Despite there being no real scientific evidence to back it up, there is copious amounts of reviews from people all over the world who swear by this method.

During the 20 minutes of swishing the oil is pushed, pulled and drawn through your teeth and around gums resulting in bacteria and other debris that regular brushing and flossing can’t catch being pulled into the oil. Enzymes are activated and toxins are removed and caught in the oil. As the process continues, the oil gets thinner and white. If the oil is still yellow, or clear, it has not been ‘pulled’ long enough. Swallowing will defeat the purpose, as will using the wrong type of oil. 

I started to oil pull just under a week ago and despite noticing a slight placebo effect I think there have been some minor results. I tried it firstly at night time, however it is recommended to be done in the morning on an empty stomach as this will refute any chance of something coming up if your gag reflex cannot handle the texture of oil as many testimonials indicate. Although I had no problem with the oil I still decided to move to the morning to get the best results. I chose coconut oil because I absolutely love the smell and the thought of any other oil in my mouth somewhat disturbed me. I believe it has to be unrefined and organic as any additives will defeat the purpose. After twenty minutes of slow swishing, no need to be vigorous, I spit it out into the bin. This is essential unless you want to clog your drains as the coconut oil can solidify once it has entered your drainpipes and block them.

And that’s it.

I do wash my mouth out with warm water, and some advise using salt water to kill any remaining bacteria.

I have noticed my teeth feel smoother and clean all day long and I haven’t woken up with any morning breath, both in which are suggested results. I do think my teeth look whiter, but honestly it could all be in my head since it hasn’t even been a week yet. I want to do this for an entire month and record my results to see if this dental technique is fact or fad. Also it does not replace brushing your teeth, it just adds to it!

Here is a list of problems oil pulling can allegedly heal:

  • Allergies

  • Arthritis

  • Asthma

  • Blood sugar levels

  • Breath freshing

  • Bronchitis

  • Cancer

  • Chronic fatigue

  • Chronic skin problems

  • Congestion

  • Detoxification

  • Diabetes

  • Difficulty sleeping

  • Headaches

  • Hemorrhoids

  • High blood pressure

  • Joint flexibility

  • Lack of energy

  • Lack of memory

  • Migraines

  • Mental fog

  • Oral health

  • Bleeding gums

  • Tooth decay

  • Gum disease

  • Pain

  • PMS, cramping

  • Radiation removal

  • Sinusitis

  • Snoring

  • Stretch marks

  • Tooth decay

  • Warts

While the list is extremely long, and some of the supposed results seem a bit too good to be true, I do believe it does help your teeth and gums live in a healthier environment.

To read more reviews on oil pulling click here and here

To read a dental professional’s take on oil pulling click here