Mental Health Month was created to raise awareness for mental health and the ways it may affect children, adults, families, and communities. Mental Health Month was established in 1949 to highlight the importance of mental health and wellness in American lives. Also, it acts as a time to celebrate those who have recovered from mental illness. Departments across the federal government, the health community, and the general public, throughout these past 20 years, have attempted to understand the prevention and treatment of mental health problems. With this new attempt at understanding, the outlook for the wellbeing of those struggling with their mental health has improved drastically.
What is Mental Health?
Emotional, psychological, and social well-being are all encompassed under mental health. It determines how we make choices, handle stressful situations, and relate to other people. Mental health is not something that only affects a certain person; children, adolescents, and adults all need to value their mental health. There are a few different things that can factor into the state of someone’s mental health. They can be biological, such as genes or brain chemistry, or life experience, such as trauma and abuse. Most people with mental health issues can get better and may fully recover, and struggling with mental health is more common than you may realize.
How to Support Someone with Mental Health Issues
Watching someone you love struggle with their mental health and become someone you are not used to can be very difficult. While that is true, though, you should never feel powerless in helping them. There are some pretty simple ways to show support through this time and their recovery.
Knowing what to look for is a sure-fire to always help. This may require you to perform some research on the types of mental illness your loved one is suffering with and the way their recovery should look. It will help you decipher when things are going well or not. Similarly, it gives an additional layer of understanding to their situation which may bring you closer and build trust.
Another way you can show your support is by seeking help. Some people with mental health issues may be too ill to advocate for themselves in the best way. You offering a helping hand with scheduling their appointments and deciding on the appropriate treatment will take a weight off their shoulders.
One of the greatest ways to help your loved one is being emotionally supportive. There is a lot of shame and blame that those suffering from mental illness put on themselves. Although we know that they are not to blame for their illness, they may be hearing that from other sources. Reassuring them that they are not alone will make a world of difference as they go through recovery.
Here are a few resources that you may use or share with a loved one who is suffering from their mental health.
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255); In Spanish 1-888-628-9454
- Crisis Text Line: Text “HELLO” to 741741
- Veterans Crisis Line: Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and press 1 or text to 838255
- Disaster Distress Helpline: Call or text 1-800-985-5990
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