In the UK alone, there is about 14.5 million people living with a disability.
When it comes to physical impairments, you are you are more likely to realize that a person has a disability, especially if they are using a wheelchair, assistive device, or hearing aid. This can make it easier to understand the challenges they face and find ways to support them.
But The truth is that 80% of individuals living with a disability have an ‘invisible’ one, which means it is less obvious to the eye, cannot be seen from the outside, and it is more difficult to understand.
here we explore some of the most common hidden disabilities, highlighting what you can do to be more inclusive and how to offer people help.
Common invisible disabilities
As mentioned, Invisible disabilities can be defined as conditions that are not immediately apparent to others. Because they are less visible or less understood, it can be more difficult for friends, colleagues, and family members to really understand how they can influence people’s experience of the world.
However, bDeveloping your awareness of the different types of hidden disabilities that exist is a great first step in becoming more caring. Here are some common ones you might want to ponder.
mental health conditions
According to Mind UK, one person in four It is affected for mental health problems of some kind in England every year. Mental health conditions can include anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
If someone goes through a period of poor mental healthThey may have difficulty coping with their thoughts, feelings, and ability to react to different situations.
For example, people living with anxiety tend to worry uncontrollably about a variety of things, from their work and health to regular housework. This can lead to feelings of restlessness and irritability, making it difficult for the individual to focus, relax, or even fall asleep.
Be available, calm and patient, as well as giving them the peace of mind they need are all the steps you can take to alleviate symptoms of those who suffer from anxiety.
learning problems, such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia are also invisible conditions that can have a significant impact on people’s daily lives.
someone affected for dyslexia, for example, you may have a more difficulty developing their reading and writing skills. Not only that, but they may also have difficulties with information processing and with remembering what they see and hear.
Dyslexia affectsyes about 10% UKthen it’s a relatively common hidden condition. If you have a colleague who may take extra time to read, write, and digest content at work, there are several actions you can take.
consider staying to the same format for forms and procedures, since it will make it easier for them to enter or search for information.
Also, before meetings, provide your team with member with relevant documents and key points in advance. This way, they will have time to process the information and feel more comfortable sharing their thoughts with the rest of the team.
some don’tEurological conditions can also be classified as invisible disabilities. This could be the case with diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy, which may not be easy to detect from the outside at first.
In the case of epilepsy, In addition to affecting the body through seizures, the condition can induce feelings of sadness, pain either anger. In fact, the symptoms and consequences of epilepsy can limit or prevent people with it from doing everyday tasks, from driving to studying.
A way to help people with epilepsy is to talk to them and ask if they need any help or advice, such as making sure they get enough sleep at night. sleep deprivation It can be a major seizure trigger, so getting the highest quality rest possible is crucial.
Chronic pain it can be extremely debilitating and have a huge influence on someone’s life. That said, it’s not always easy to spot, which means people can live with arthritis, fibromyalgia, or severe back pain without anyone noticing..
For example meIn the UK only, there are more than 430,000 individuals with rheumatoid arthritis, a condition that causes swelling, stiffness, and pain in the joints. This disease can affect people in different ways and, although the right medical prescription to be able to help relieve symptoms, it can hinder the ability to perform daily tasks.
If you know someone with arthritis, there are simple and thoughtful things you can do to help. If you go out to eat, something as quick and easy as opening a bottle or can could save them from a challenging and painful activity.
How to be more inclusive in Set
WWhat can you do to be more aware of people living with invisible disabilities?
the truth is that you can never know who has one for sure. So, we’ve put together a few tips to help you be more inclusive, whether you’re aware of someone’s hidden condition or not:
- Don’t expect people to reveal or prove your disability. Not everyone is comfortable revealing his invisible condition, and that is totally understandable. They may be afraid of feeling stigmatized or just want to avoid potentially insensitive comments. So how should you behave?
youThe best solution is to be aware and careful about what you do and say in all situations. This way, you will be inclusive of the people who can also benefit from it.
- Be a good listener when they trust you – If someone decides open up and talk to you, respond without judging and show your appreciation.
- Know how to respond if you say something ‘wrong’: Sometimes you may say or react in a way that seems like inconsidered. Mistakes can happen, but be sure to acknowledge what she said by promising to be better next time. No cause a scene or downplay what you said to avoid embarrassment. Instead, accept responsibility and learn from it. If you are not sure why you were called, acknowledge it and ask for help. In this way, you will understand how to express yourself in a better and more inclusive way.
either at work or within our family and social circle, there are many people who live with hidden diseases. But by educating ourselves and expanding our understanding of these conditions, we can actively break down the barriers for all those living with invisible disabilities.