Mental Illness Awareness Week

The first full week of October is Mental Illness Awareness Week. Although mental health problems are gaining steadier awareness every year, they are often neglected. A majority of mental illnesses are invisible and because we cannot see anything physically broken we can more easily ignore the problem. Millions of people worldwide struggle with mental illness yet it continues to be stigmatized in the workplace and glamorized in the media.

Understanding Mental Illness

There are many different types of mental illness and often multiple conditions will present together. Most sufferers are embarrassed, believing they are a burden to others and therefore unlikely to speak up. The stress of keeping a mental illness under wraps in order to continue working or going to school adds to the strain the brain is already going through.

Types of Mental Illness

  • Mood Disorders:
    • Major Depressive (MDD)
    • Bipolar
  • Anxiety Disorders:
    • Generalized Anxiety (GAD)
    • Obsessive Compulsive (OCD)
    • Social Anxiety/Social Phobia
    • Post-Traumatic (PTSD)
    • Panic
  • Eating Disorders:
    • Anorexia Nervosa
    • Bulimia Nervosa
    • Binge Eating
    • Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder (OSFED)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD/ADD)
  • Schizophrenia
  • Autism Spectrum
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Suicide
  • Substance Abuse/Addiction

It’s Not All in Your Head

You aren’t making this stuff up, how could you make this stuff up? According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately 60% of adults sufferers will receive no mental health services. Many times insurance plans will cover little to no inpatient mental health treatment and high co-pays, deductibles, co-insurance costs, as well as high out-of-pocket medication costs continue to create barriers for treatment. If you believe you or someone you know are suffering from a mental illness please seek help as soon as possible.

Visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness or Mental Health America for more information.

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