Adam and I completed the second half of the Mental Health First Aid class. So next time you see us, feel free to share your inner-most demons and struggles. Just let loose, because we can handle any mental issue that could possibly be thrown our way.
I'm kidding, of course.
I did thoroughly enjoy the class, and I found it to be very informative. There were a few facts and ideas given that really stood out to me, so much that I'm still thinking about them today. I would like to share these with you.
- 89% of individuals with mental disorders are treatable with services and supports. ~~ I don't know about you, but I think this is a pretty good statistic.
- Half of all mental health issues begin by age 14. The average time that it takes for those to seek treatment is TEN years. ~~ This is way too long! I'm sure that the negative stigma associated with mental illness contributes to this sad statistic.
- Mental health challenges and disorders are the leading cause of disability in the United States. ~~ Damn!
- Suicide is the second leading cause of death on college campuses. (The first is accidents.) ~~ This fact is unbelievably scary.
- The phrase "committed suicide", should not be used. ~~ Think about other things that are committed: crimes, sins... It has a very negative connotation. That is the last thing the person's loved ones should be faced with. Alternatives are, "died by", or "resorted to" suicide.
- No one would ever describe a person who has cancer as "cancerous". So if a person has schizophrenia, should we describe him as "a schizophrenic?" No. He "has schizophrenia". An illness is an illness...
- This quote totally sums up why people need to be more educated and comfortable dealing with the topic of mental illness: "If more people were prepared when I went into a crisis it would never have been called a crisis. It would have been a meaningful conversation about what my needs were in that moment, and how the people who were closest to me could support me through it." ~~ I love this. It was stated by Brianna Masselli. She wrote it in the forward to the book, Youth Mental Health First Aid. Think of how many less kids would suffer, just because the people who love and surround them, possess the knowledge and language to support them.