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May is Mental Health Month Marks 70 Years

May is Mental Health Month Marks 70 Years

#4Mind4Body Theme Highlights Importance of Work-Life Balance, Pets, Spirituality in Achieving Balanced Mental Health

WEST PLAINS, Mo—When you or someone you love is dealing with a mental health concern, sometimes it’s a lot to handle. It’s important to remember that mental health is essential to everyone’s overall health and well-being, and mental illnesses are common and treatable.

May is Mental Health Month was started 70 years ago by the national organization, Mental Health America, to raise awareness about mental health conditions and the importance of good mental health for everyone. Last year, Mental Health Month materials were seen and used by over 30 million people, with more than 16,000 entities downloading MHA’s tool kit.

A healthy lifestyle can help to prevent the onset or worsening of mental health conditions, as well as chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. It can also help people recover from these conditions. For those dealing with a chronic health condition and the people who care for them, it can be especially important to focus on mental health.

That is why in 2019 we are expanding upon last year’s theme of 4Mind4Body and taking it to the next level, as we explore the topics of animal companionship, spirituality and religion, humor, work-life balance, and recreation and social connections as ways to boost mental health and general wellness.

During May, MHA will also look at how these topics may be especially beneficial to people who are living with chronic physical illnesses as we ramp up to MHA’s 2019 Annual Conference – Dueling Diagnoses: Mental Health and Chronic Conditions in Children and Adults, June 13-15 in Washington, D.C. where MHA will be discussing the impact and intersection of chronic conditions and mental health.

“It is important to really look at your overall health, both physically and mentally, to achieve wellness,” said Julie Posey, LCSW, OMC Mountain Grove. “Finding a reason to laugh, going for a walk with a friend, meditating, playing with a pet, or working from home once a week can go a long way in making you both physically and mentally healthy – it’s all about finding the right balance to benefit both the mind and body.”

MHA has developed a series of fact sheets (available at www.mentalhealthamerica.net/may) to help people understand how their lifestyle affects their health.

“We know that living a healthy lifestyle is not always easy, but it can be achieved by gradually making small changes and building on those successes,” concluded Rochelle Smith, MS, LPC, NCC, Mental Health Therapist, OMC Behavioral Health. “Finding the balance between work and play, the ups and downs of life, physical health and mental health, can help you on the path towards focusing both 4Mind4Body.”

For more information on May is Mental Health Month, visit MHA’s website at www.mentalhealthamerica.net/may.

OMC Behavioral Healthcare offers efficient and effective mental health services to children and adults including individual, couples and family counseling. In addition, BHC provides case management, anger management, parenting groups, dual diagnosis groups, and medication services to help reduce the severity and duration of mental health disorders. Our team of psychiatrist, social workers, nurse practitioner, nurses, Community Support Specialists, Peer Specialists, Family Support Providers, and counselors provide convenient, comprehensive care to keep our community mentally healthy.

If you or someone you care for is experiencing a psychiatric emergency, call the crisis hotline (MOCARS) 24-hours a day, 7 days a week at 800-356-5395.

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