Prince Harry Urges Military Personnel To Open Up About Struggles With Mental Health [VIDEO]
(Photo : Gustavo Caballero/Getty Image)
Prince Harry urged servicemen and women to not be afraid to talk about mental health issues they may be going through. The royal led a panel discussion with three veterans of the U.K. and U.S. Armed Forces on Thursday for a mental health conference at King's College London.
One of the veterans in the panel was Ivan Castro. He was left blind and almost dead in a tense encounter while deployed in Iraq a decade ago.
Not only did his determination help him get back to the service, he has also been able to run in marathons around the world. Prince Harry handed him a blue "Heads Together" headband. Castro will be running a marathon for Heads Together.
Heads Together is a campaign promoted by Princes Harry, Prince William and Princess Kate to raise awareness about mental health issues, encourage openness and provide support to individuals with such types of struggles.
Addressing the military people among the audience, Prince Harry discussed how important it is to recognize their mental health challenges, the most common being depression, anxiety and adjustment disorder, the People reported.
The stigma around having the most common conditions such as depression might prevent them from getting the help they need, he added. Prince Harry stressed that just as differences in physical health exist it is also the case with mental fitness which also deserves attention.
The 32-year-old prince served in the army for 10 years which included deployment to Afghanistan. He earned the rank of Captain in April 2011, the British Royal Family's official website wrote. Prince Harry took on his first operational tour in Afghanistan as a forward air controller in 2007 and the second time as an Apache Pilot in support to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and the Afghan forces.
He has been actively working to promote awareness and support for wounded servicemen and women as they adjust to the changes in their lives.