May Spotlight on Mental Health Month
As proclaimed by the organization Mental Health America (MHA) since 1949, the month of May is Mental Health Month.
The theme for this year’s month of awareness is entitled “Risky Business,” and places special focus on risk factors, such as addiction, that are often associated with mental health disorders.
This year’s theme focuses on the signs and signals that could indicate an underlying mental illness. Visit RECO Institute in Delray Beach for help.
Addiction and issues of mental health correlate very closely, and it is crucial in the realm of addiction treatment to treat a person’s history as a whole. Through such events as Mental Health Month, the public is encouraged to initiate a larger conversation about the stigmas attached to mental illness, addiction, and all other related issues.
MHA specifically lists prescription drug misuse as a major factor. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), nearly 2.4 million Americans have used prescription drugs for non-medical purposes, though MHA estimates that 12.5 million Americans have misused prescription opioids, with misuse meaning taking prescription medication in any other manner (quantity, dosage, etc.) than prescribed by a physician.
Both mental illness and addiction should be treated with compassion—a sense of empathy, even when we may not understand what an individual is going through. Our treatment of these illnesses is of paramount importance, as none of us, regardless of any societal differences, are immune.
As Carole Anne Trisler stated, “Don’t be ashamed to admit you are vulnerable. Recognize you’re taking the first steps to save your own life.”
In these last days of May, RECO stands behind MHA’s mission to educate on mental health and co-occurring disorders. Whether you are seeking help for yourself or wondering how you can support a friend or family member, taking those “first steps” in admitting vulnerability could not only save your own life, but someone else’s, too.