Mental Health Awareness Month
May 01, 2021
Alyson Kuroski-Mazzei, DO, MRO, DFAPA
CEO & Chief Medical Officer
May is Mental Health Awareness Month and over the past year we have seen mental health challenges surge during the pandemic. This month is more important than ever to bring light to these issues. As an organization, we will continue to help shift society’s mindset and combat the impact that mental illness has on our families, our businesses, our healthcare systems and our culture.
According to JAMA, COVID-19 has tripled the rate of depression in U.S. adults in all demographic groups. Researchers in Texas found that 71% of college students are reporting an increase in depression and anxiety related to COVID-19 and Mental Health America reports an increase in suicidal ideation among adults and youth. Also, mental health inequities across the country and in the Charlotte area continue to be an issue that we need to take action on.
While the data is alarming, there is hope. Research shows that having a proper diagnosis and receiving evidence-based treatment, which may include medication management, can change the trajectory of an individual’s life. Also, there are small changes that can be incorporated in everyone’s daily lives to support mental wellness.
The following are tips from HopeWay to enhance mental wellness:
Be patient with yourself.
Make self-care a priority.
Exercise for at least 30 minutes, at least 5 days per week (AHA recommendation).
Incorporate mindful eating.
Wake up and go to bed at the same time each day.
Practice gratitude daily.
If you are struggling with mental health issues, recognize that you are not alone. Please contact a medical professional if you or a loved one is in need.
Let’s use this month to combat the continued stigma of mental health, reduce the disparities in access to mental health care, take care of ourselves and inspire mental wellness for all.
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