May is Mental Health Month
May is Mental Health Month
One in five Americans experienced some sort of mental illness in 2010, according to a new report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. About 5 percent of Americans have marked difficulty coping with daily functioning due to mental illness.
• One in 5 Americans suffers from a mental illness.
• More women than men are diagnosed with mental illness (23 percent of women versus 16.9 percent of men).
• About 11.4 million adult Americans suffered from severe mental illness in the past year and 8.7 million adults contemplated serious thoughts of suicide. More than 2 million made suicide plans and about 1 million attempted suicide.
• Only about 60 percent of people with mental illness get treatment each year.
“Mental illnesses can be managed successfully, and people do recover,” Pamela S. Hyde, head of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, said in a news release. “Mental illness is not an isolated public health problem. Cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity often co-exist with mental illness and treatment of the mental illness can reduce the effects of these disorders. The Obama Administration is working to promote the use of mental health services through health reform. People, families and communities will benefit from increased access to mental health services.” (Conley, M. 1/2013)
Pathways to Wellness—this year’s theme for May is Mental Health Month—calls attention to strategies and approaches that help all Americans achieve wellness and good mental and overall health.
“Mental Health and wellness are important but often get neglected, especially during stressful times when we need it the most,” said Deidre Ashley, Executive Director for Jackson Hole Community Counseling Center. “We all have different ideas about what mental health means, but it really incorporates having a skill set and strategies that can prevent the onset or shorten the duration of illness/stress.” It involves complete general, mental and social well-being. And mental health is an essential component of overall health and well-being. The fact is our overall well-being is tied to the balance that exists between our emotional, physical, spiritual and mental health. Everyone is at risk of stress given the demands it brings and the challenges at work and at home.
But there are steps that maintain well-being and help everyone achieve wellness. These involve a balanced diet, regular exercise, enough sleep, a sense of self-worth, development of coping skills that promote resiliency, emotional awareness, and connections to family, friends and the community.
Jackson Hole Community Counseling Center is a 501(c)3, non-profit that provides essential mental health services for Teton County. Services are offered on a sliding fee. 24/7 crisis services are available through walk in or hotline. 733-2046 or 1-800-273-TALK.
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SafeTALK, about three hours in duration, is a training that prepares anyone over the age of 15 to identify persons with thoughts of suicide and connect them to suicide first aid resources. Most people with thoughts of suicide invite help to stay safe. Alert helpers know how to use these opportunities to support that desire for safety. As a safeTALK-trained suicide alert helper, you will be better able to:
move beyond common tendencies to miss, dismiss or avoid suicide;
identify people who have thoughts of suicide;
apply the TALK steps (Tell, Ask, Listen and KeepSafe) to connect a person with suicide thoughts to suicide first aid, intervention caregivers.