There are nine mental health documentaries worth watching on Netflix and Amazon Prime. So why not use our resources for the better and educate ourselves about this concerning titan?
Watching real people talk about real issues is one of the reasons why I love documentary films. They place a human voice on global issues that may otherwise be hard to understand or relate to.
Watching documentaries is an excellent source for expanding your knowledge base and learning more about the world we inhabit. They’re also an effective means of absorbing new content when you don’t want to read a book.
Besides, if nowadays there are countless resources available online that we can easily get at any time, why not use them for good?
If you want to learn more about mental illness, check out these nine educational videos about mental health.
1. The Anonymous People (Amazon Prime)
Heartfelt and provocative essays, The Anonymous People deconstructed the idea that “addicted people are homeless people living under the bridge.” They dive into the addiction crises we’ve been living with – which is basically a mental health issue.
The story of The Anonymous People are shared through the faces and voices (and sometimes even the bodies) of the people who are risking everything to save the lives of their fellow humans. It really is an inspiring documentary.
2. The Mind, Explained (Netflix)
This documentary series examines the complexity of our brains. It covers a wide range of topics from memories, dreams, anxieties, creativity, mindfulness, mind control, and even psychedelia.
It may not be as deep as some other documentary series, but it’s certainly entertaining and informative. If you’re looking for something quick and easy, then this might be just right for you.
3. Of Two Minds (Prime Video)
Of Two Minds follows three individuals who live with bipolar disorder in the United States today.
It shows people living with bipolar disorder from their perspective, revealing what it’s like to experience extreme moods and periods of depression and mania.
4. Lost Angels: Skid Row Is My Home (Prime Video)
Lost Angels is a heartwarming film about the struggles of homeless individuals in Los Angeles. It was directed by David Gordon Green, whose previous films include Pineapple Express, Your Highness, Joe Somebody, and Prince Avalanche.
If you enjoyed this documentary, I’d recommend checking out his channel Soft White Underbelly for some really interesting stories.
5. Take Your Pills (Netflix)
The book takes a look at the role prescription stimulants (such as Adderall) play in modern society: their pros and cons.
“The urge to achieve more, do better, and become more is an intrinsic part of being human. And in today’s world, where the demand to succeed is at its highest ever, the drive to reach one’s potential often comes at the expense of sleep, family time, and even health.”
6. Heal (Netflix)
If you’re into both mental health and spiritualism, then you’ll enjoy this documentary.
We live in an age when we’re told that we don’t really have any power over our lives. But it’s true—we actually do!
It features the brilliant minds of leading scientific researchers and spiritual leaders who share their real-life experiences with us. We learn what works, what doesn’t, and why.
7. Light in the Darkness – Living Well After Trauma (Prime Video)
“Light in the Darkness” is a documentary about PTSD.
Combining the expertise of neurologists and others with the stories of survivors and their families gives this documentary an important place in the national discussion of post-traumatic stress disorder.
“We’re going for something that feels real.”
“Light in the Darkness” is a powerful resource for people living with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as a unique way to help others who have a loved one with the disorder.
We hope this film will be seen by as many people as possible because it provides useful information about PTSD and helps viewers understand why they may need support for themselves or their loved ones.
8. The Wounds We Cannot See (Prime Video)
A film telling the story of one person’s struggle against addiction, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and mental illness.
A former U.S. Navy airman, Nancy Ross, was brutally raped by a fellow serviceman when she was serving in the United States military in 1988.
Since then, Nancy has been struggling with addiction and depression. Despite undergoing extensive therapy, she continues to live in constant fear of the unknown.
(If you don’t already have Prime Video, you can watch this documentary on YouTube.)
9. Neurons To Nirvana: Understanding Psychedelic Medicines (Prime Video)
Through interviews with leading researchers, writers, and psychologists, Neurons to Nirvana explains the history of five powerful psychedelics and their previously known medicinal properties.
This movie shows that some psychedelics can help people with mental health issues. It’s a good one to watch if you’re interested in exploring the topic further.
You can also watch it here on YouTube.
Documentaries are an awesome way to learn about things that interest you. They help broaden your perspective and give you new insights into complex subjects.
Most important of all, they increase our empathy—something we desperately needed during these uncertain times.