This week, Oct. 6-12, is National Mental Illness Awareness Week — an important opportunity to learn more about mental illnesses as well as an opportunity to make a difference. Mental Illness does not discriminate — and it is not politically partisan — one in four people are impacted by mental illness, with most illnesses becoming noticeable by age 24.
Everyone needs to understand the nature of mental illness and learn the symptoms of different conditions — and when these symptoms manifest themselves, know where to find help for yourself or others. Many may start with their primary care doctor — others start by confiding in a close family member or friend; when they do, it’s important to take their concerns seriously. Don’t be afraid to speak up or reach out — the U.S. Surgeon General has reported that stigma is a major barrier to people seeking help when they need it. That’s why this week is observed — the more people know the better they can help themselves or their loved ones.
If you want to know more, fact sheets about specific diagnoses and treatment options are available from the National Alliance on Mental Illness at: www.nami.org If you wish to learn more or have questions to ask, you can also check in with your local Affiliate, NAMI Snohomish County: (425)339-3620 or check our website: -->