Health & Wellness from Carol

May is Mental Illness Month

MEDSCAPE, a resource for MD’s, has recently reported a record number of Americans suffer serious psychological disease (SPD). The US suicide rate is currently 43,000 people per year. Medscape, states the new high-risk profile for suicide in this country are individuals considered to be middle age.

According to the website Uncommon Knowledge, depression will be the most disabling condition in the world by 2020, behind heart disease. This site was created by a therapist and counseling trainer in the UK, Mark Terrell. Mr.Terrell and his organization believe the most sensible way to lower the rates of depression is to spread accurate information among the general public about what depression is.

World Health Organization (WHO), states there are more than 300 million people globally who suffer from depression – only half of whom receive treatment. Females are more likely to be affected by depression than males. People with depression can suffer greatly and function poorly. Depression is the 2nd leading cause of death in the 15-29 y/o group.

Treatments are effective!
There are many reasons people do not seek treatment. Some listed are lack of resources, lack of trained professionals, inaccurate assessment, and STIGMA. Stigma can be a public stigma or self perceived stigma (aka public stigma or private stigma). The World Psychiatric Association’s, World Psychiatry publication has reported three approaches to reduce stigma against severe mental illness (SMI). They are protest, education, and contact. Out of these three, education followed by contact is most promising. The National Institute of Health, (NIH) had a study in which education, along with portraying mental illness and substance abuse as treatable health conditions, has been shown to reduce stigma.

I have seen positive attitudes towards mental illness and substance abuse here at Central Christian Church. I look forward to wearing my “Stigma Fighters!” tee shirt on Mental Health Sunday, May 21st.

Posted walks for mental health awareness will be:
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) walk on Saturday Sept 23rd
American Foundation of Suicide Prevention (AFSP), “Out of the Darkness Walk” on Saturday, October 28th.

So, ladies and gentlemen, get your sneakers out and start walking to get those leg muscles strong.(heart and lungs too)

I am happy to announce that our own Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Katie Gates, LMFT, is going to be in the parlor after church on Mental Health Sunday, May 21. for a “Chat about Depression.” This will be in a relaxed format, so please come with your questions. Of course, we will have refreshments.

Carol Gay




Carol Lydic, RN & FCN