When looking at the startling facts about mental health in America, it isn’t challenging to see that many individuals face serious adversity. Those affected by psychological health disorders require care, therapy, and ongoing support for symptom management. They also require compassion and understanding from society.
Substance use disorders and depression, for instance, are highly stigmatized in the U.S. and abroad. Stigma causes people to feel shame and guilt about the problems they struggle with, even though those affected are not responsible for their disorders.
While addiction, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder are treatable, many men and women have difficulty accessing care. A significant number of people living with mental health disorders are reticent to seek assistance due to fear. Some will convince themselves that suffering in silence is better than having their peers look at them differently.
When mental health issues are ignored the result can be deadly; by the same token, stigma has fatal consequences. Fortunately, each day is a new opportunity to combat stigma, and encourage more people to seek life-saving support and adopt programs of recovery.
May is Mental Health Month (MHM)! In observance of the annual event, Mental Health America (MHA) is calling on every person to prioritize overall health and well-being. People in recovery can use the occasion to talk about their successes in recovery, perhaps inspiring others to make similar efforts.
Giving Hope to People with Mental Health Disorders
The fact that millions of Americans are in recovery from addiction and other forms of mental illness is indeed inspiring. It means that it is possible to lead a full, productive life in spite of a mental health disorder diagnosis. However, individuals do not recover on their own; effective treatment and continued maintenance are imperative.
When men and women share their story with others, it can have a cathartic effect on other people. There is power in sharing! Those who ignore the stigma and tell what it was like, what happened, and what it’s like now, give others hope. Those who share their personal experience inspire others to seek help and not give up, no matter what.
Mental Health Month is led by MHA, an organization that has been advocating for people living with mental illness for more than a century. The nonprofit spearheads several campaigns, many of which connect people living with psychological issues. One MHA initiative worth further discussion is #mentalillnessfeelslike.
Persons with social media accounts can share their struggles and successes with others who face similar experiences. Some will use the #mentalillnessfeelslike to ask questions about treatment and recovery. Help is out there, but sometimes an individual needs to hear about it first from real people, not experts.
There are other social media opportunities that people in recovery can utilize to inspire others to make changes. Please click here for a Mental Health Month toolkit, to help guide your involvement.
Through open and honest conversations about mental illness, we can affect real change in the lives of others. In the process, we can break the stigma of mental illness that stands in the way of recovery.
Almost 60 percent of adults with a mental illness didn’t receive mental health services in the previous year, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Together, we have the power to reduce that figure!
Faith-based Addiction and Dual-Diagnosis Treatment
At Celebrate Hope, our dedicated team of addiction professionals can help you or a loved one lead a fulfilling and productive life in recovery. Alcohol and substance use disorder is a form of mental illness. However, such conditions are often accompanied by one or more co-occurring mental illness.
It’s vital to treat the addiction and dual-diagnosis at the same time so that neither condition stands in the way of recovery. Please contact us today to learn more about our faith-based dual-diagnosis program.