Science Museum Debuts Mental Health Exhibit
ST. PAUL -- Over $190-billion in income is lost in the United States every year due to serious mental illness. A new exhibit coming to St. Paul tries to shed more light on the topic.
The Science Museum of Minnesota is bringing Mental Health: Mind Matters through its doors. The Science Museum is the first venue in North America to host the traveling exhibit. The exhibit started at Heureka - The Finnish Science Center.
Kim Ramsden is the museum's communications director. She says the exhibit is a very interactive one, based on several mental illnesses. It's designed to educate on issues a lot of people deal with, but most don't understand.
"[You can] learn what it's like if you were someone who heard voices. So the exhibit has several areas that are interactive, and designed to build empathy."
One part of the exhibit features a "depression theatre" where you can put yourself into the experiences of a family dealing with it first hand.
"Seeing a living room, where you'll be put into the minds of different family members where a father is dealing with depression."
Another interactive portion of the exhibit is "Are You Afraid". It's a full body game that puts you in a dark forest to confront scary creatures, with only their eyes as indicators. You'll try to "survive the night", learning how to handle fear.
The exhibit will also contain a history of the treatment of mental illness going back decades. From asylums to today's modern cognitive therapy. They'll also feature resources people can use to help.
Several individuals also shared their stories for the exhibit in "My Life" videos.
One in five adults in America deals with some form of mental illness. The average person with mental illness will go 10 years between symptoms developing and getting treatment.
Mental Health: Mind Matters opens Friday and will be open until next January. It is included in the cost of a normal museum ticket.