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Instagram's New Feature Could Potentially Save Lives

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Instagram's New Feature Could Potentially Save Lives

Though it may not be obvious all the time, people all around us are suffering from mental illness.

Some are unwilling to talk about it, others are unwilling to accept it. However, attitudes towards it should always remain the same - it's okay to talk.

For those that lean towards keeping their mental health a secret, or on the down low, there are options everywhere. These options are growing everyday, and now Instagram has added itself to the long list of those helping out.

Social media can often be a place where a front is put on to cover up mental scars. The idea that through social media you can paint a picture for followers, making it look like you're okay but you're not, is not healthy.

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Recognising this, Instagram has added a feature which calls for people to offer help to someone they might follow, without there being any kind of awkwardness or confusion during a confrontation.

Credit: Instagram

If an Instagram user sees a picture or video that strikes them in a way that they worry about the poster's mental health, there will be the option for Instagram to send an anonymous message on your behalf. The message reads: "Someone saw one of your posts and thinks you might be going through a difficult time. If you need support, we'd like to help," which is then followed by a list of resources, which include a helpline.

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"We listen to mental health experts when they tell us that outreach from a loved one can make a real difference for those who may be in distress," Instagram's chief operating officer Marne Levine said. "At the same time, we understand friends and family often want to offer support but don't know how best to reach out. These tools are designed to let you know that you are surrounded by a community that cares about you, at a moment when you might most need that reminder."

Another feature that comes with the update is that if anything to do with self-harm is searched for, a message offering help will appear.

Credit: Instagram

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This is a much needed update.

Be brave. Talk about mental health.

Explore more here and don't suffer in silence. Reach out. It's the brave thing to do.

MIND: 0300 123 3393.

Samaritans: 116 123.

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CALM: Outside London 0808 802 5858, inside London 0800 58 58 58.

At TheLADbible we're trying to gather the biggest picture of mental health for young people and we're working with a range of charities so that our findings can help them. Filling in this poll will help us find out the extent of the problem.

Featured image credit: PA

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Topics: Instagram

Mark McGowan
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