Mind Your Mental Health
May includes National Anxiety and Depression Awareness Week
During the week of May 18-23, this health observance highlights two potentially debilitating mental health conditions that can impact all areas of life.
- Symptoms vary. Anxiety is often characterized by restlessness, irritability, racing thoughts, excessive worry and breathing discomfort. Sudden panic attacks may co-occur. Depression involves extended periods of sad mood, hopeless feelings, diminished interest in activities, fatigue and trouble concentrating.
- Causes vary. While anxiety and depression can be caused by neurochemical imbalances in the brain, they also can be caused by traumatic life events like an injury, illness or personal loss.
- They can co-occur. When depression and anxiety simultaneously impact someone, coping can seem overwhelming. Treatment in the form of therapy combined with medications is effective.
- Getting help is important. Sometimes people feel ashamed about having anxiety or depression. However, these are common illnesses; don't let embarrassment stand in the way of getting treatment.
As many of you may know, May is Mental Health Month. Throughout the month we will be highlighting the importance of speaking openly about mental health. One in five adults in the U.S. experience a mental health condition within a given year. Youth mental health is worsening, with severe depression rates continually increasing. While this is important to address year-round, emphasizing mental health awareness during May provides a time for people to come together and help reduce mental illness stigma.
With your help, we can bring awareness to the prevalence of mental health conditions in our communities. It’s our job to help end the stigma surrounding addictions and mental health by sharing resources and starting conversations. Throughout the month of May, we encourage family, friends, and loved ones to learn more about mental health.
Here are some important facts you should know:
- Over 44 million American adults have a mental health condition.
- 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
- In 2018, there were more than two and a half times as many suicides (48,344) in the United States as there were homicides (18,830).
- Just over half (50.6%) of children with a mental health condition aged 6-17 received mental health services in 2016.
- Mental health workforce shortage remains.
- An estimated 31.1% of U.S. adults experience any anxiety disorder at some time in their lives.
Remember, mental illness does not discriminate. Join us to help bring attention to the importance of sharing mental health stories and help improve the lives of millions of Americans living with a mental illness.
Help is available! Visit https://www.magellanhealthcare.com/about/bh-resources/mymh/ or contact your program to learn more about how to help yourself or someone you care about.