An Issue That Touches All of Us
May is National Mental Health Awareness Month and, in our opinion, it couldn’t come at a better time. Of course, mental health is important all year round. But at this time in our history, with so many of us facing anxiety over the future, the topic is especially relevant. As the president himself said, “Not only has [coronavirus] caused immense physical suffering and loss for many people, it has also resulted in mental and emotional hardship. The stress and worry over the health and safety of family and friends, forced isolation, and financial distress can all result in anxiety, depression, substance misuse and abuse, and, tragically, even suicide.” It is an issue that touches all of us and National Mental Health Awareness Month is an opportunity to shine some light on the subject.
End the Stigma
The stigma surrounding mental health is a significant and unfortunate barrier to treatment. To those in recovery who are reading this, I’d like you to think back on some of the things you went through prior to treatment. Specifically, some of the attitudes and perspectives from others you may have encountered. If your experience was like mine, you had a number of well-meaning friends and relatives give you a pep talk to help you “find your willpower to beat this thing.” Or perhaps it was “tough love” and angry exhortations to “snap out of it.” While these folks may have had noble intentions, this kind of mindset keeps people from seeking real help. Mental health issues aren’t a matter of willpower or a lack of positive thinking. They are conditions of the brain and they require professional attention.
Increase the Awareness
Those friends and family who made those speeches weren’t trying to keep us from getting treatment. Like much of the general public, they merely lack the proper information. It’s up to us to help set the record straight on mental health. Those of us who have struggled with substance abuse or eating disorders in the past. Those of us who work in mental health treatment. Our experiences and our training put us in a unique position to help shine some light on the truth about mental health disorders. I’m not suggesting we get on a soapbox and start finger-wagging. However, I will say that I relish the opportunity to talk about my history and my work when asked. It’s a chance for more lights to turn on and more doors to open.
Build Your Foundation for Success
If you know someone who is struggling with mental health issues, talk to them. Let them know they’re not alone. Let them know that there is no shame in seeking professional assistance. Ocean Recovery has been successfully treating substance abuse and eating disorders since 2002. Furthermore, we remain open and committed to our mission during these uncertain times. We offer individual and group counseling, nutritional therapy, yoga, and more. If you or someone you love is struggling with mental health disorders, please consider calling Ocean Recovery today. Our admissions specialists are standing by to help you start building your foundation for success.