The tabloids have been buzzing about Kit Harington, and not only because of the series finale of “Game of Thrones” but because the 32-year-old star of this popular show has checked into a wellness retreat to seek help for exhaustion, stress, and alcohol abuse. During his rehab stint, “Page Six” reports that Harington is “undergoing psychological coaching, practicing mindful meditation and cognitive behavioral therapy to combat stress and deal with negative emotions at the facility.” After seasons of filming the hit show “Game of Thrones,” the last episode hit home for Kit, making him more anxious about the future. Ending a big project or a life stage can be triggering for anyone, especially if they have spent years working up to their goal.

Mental health affects everyone

Often, our society assumes that the wealthy, successful, and famous communities are living such a great life that these individuals are immune to any mental health struggles or substance abuse. Kit Harington is a well-known actor thanks to the popular hit show “Game of Thrones” and many famous individuals often live their lives under a microscope, succumbing to harsh criticism and the need for perfection, which can break them down over time. Mental health and substance abuse affect anyone from all walks of life. Many celebrities choose to speak out and share their story, which can help lessen the stigma of mental health and substance abuse in society. These brave individuals lend their voice and share their mental health journeys with their communities and instead of the rejection, risk and shame that some celebrities faced in the past; many have been met with welcome and encouragement.

Sharing in Hollywood can help reduce the stigma

High profile individuals such as celebrities who disclose their experiences with mental illness bring a positive light to health and wellness. Research supports this, with data showing how positive stories result in more people seeking help as a result of a celebrity’s disclosure. Stigma research has shown that the telling of positive stories about living with mental illness significantly reduces the myths of mental illness. When the public learns about a person who lives with a clinical disorder, manages it well, and experiences a rewarding life, stigma is reduced.

Alcohol abuse as a coping mechanism

Like Kit Harrington, many individuals (famous and non-famous) use alcohol as a coping mechanism to help deal with everyday stressors or significant obstacles that are in the way. Alcohol can be an easy way to escape from reality temporarily and forget about the stress that work and family can bring. Over time these individuals can use alcohol as a crutch to help them overcome their problems and get through the day, but without knowing can become dependent on alcohol. When other individuals start to notice your drinking patterns, become worried for you, or when you notice that your life and emotions are being controlled by alcohol; then you most likely have an addiction and should seek professional help. Kit Harington did just that. He checked himself into a wellness center to undergo professional treatment for what he is going through. Alcohol addiction and mental illnesses can be treated successfully with the right clinical program and treatment team. If you think you may need professional help, it is never too late to enter treatment. Hopefully, more celebrities and non-celebrities continues to come forward and share their story about mental health and substance abuse with the world.