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Observing Mental Health Month in May

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You are not alone: Mental Health Awareness Month

Author, lecturer and activist Helen Keller once said, “Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.”  

In the United States, millions of youth and adults face mental health challenges every year, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and other behavioral health conditions, but there is no reason to suffer alone or in silence – help is available. 

Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May since 1949, and Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health is proud to serve as a nationally recognized leader in the evolving field of behavioral healthcare, providing innovative specialty mental health programs/services for youth and adults with emotional and behavioral disorders. 

“As we mark Mental Health Awareness Month, we cannot stress enough the importance of informing and educating others about why mental health matters and drawing attention to this critical topic that is all too often ignored or stigmatized,” said Devereux President and CEO Carl E. Clark II. “Even if you are not personally affected by mental illness, it is highly likely that you know someone – a family member or friend – who is struggling with mental health issues. The most important thing you can do is show your compassion and support, and let them know that you are there – and you care.”   

Know the warning signs

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), mental health conditions are more common than cancer, diabetes or heart disease. Approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. – 43.8 million, or 18.5 percent – experience a mental health challenge in a given year. Similarly, NAMI states that 1 in 5 youth, ages 13 to 18, have, or will have, a serious mental illness in their lifetime.  

Although each behavioral health condition has its own symptoms, common warning signs in youth and adults can include:

  • Excessive sadness or worrying
  • Extreme changes in mood, thought, energy or behavior
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Inability to carry out daily activities or handle stress
  • Avoiding friends or social activities
  • Changes in eating or sleeping habits
  • Weight loss or weight gain
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs
  • Delusions or hallucinations
  • Thoughts of self-harm or suicide 

Devereux’s specialty mental health services

For those facing a mental health challenge, Devereux wants you (and your family) to know that, with help, it is a challenge that can be overcome. For more than a century, Devereux has remained at the forefront of delivering exceptional services and supports to individuals and families in need.  

The nonprofit organization is committed to providing evidence-based, trauma-focused care to children, adolescents and adults with emotional and behavioral disorders in community and residential treatment settings across the country. Diagnoses served include:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Depression
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Disruptive behavior disorders 

“No matter what you or someone you know is going through – help is just a phone call away,” Clark explained. “Remember, you do not have to face your struggles alone. Asking for help is the first step in getting the support and resources you need to live a more rewarding and fulfilling life.”

  

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