Friday, October 7, 2016

Raising Awareness About Mental Health and Illness . . . Time to Start Talking

Every individual is different and so is their ability to cope with everyday stresses and life in general.  All of us have mental health and many of us suffer from varying degrees of mental illness.  The National Alliance for Mental Health (NAMI) estimates that there are 60 million Americans living with mental illness each year.

During Mental Illness Awareness Week, which occurs during the first full week of October, and throughout the year, NAMI works to fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care for mental illnesses. And every year, the movement grows stronger, shining a light on mental illness and replacing stigma with hope.  Learn more about NAMI and its new stigma free initiative.  Being Stigma Free means learning about and educating others on mental illness, focusing on connecting with people to see each other as individuals and not a diagnosis, and most importantly, taking action on mental health issues.

Did you know that Colorado lost 1,058 people to suicide last year?  This is the highest number in state history. That puts Colorado’s suicide rate at 19.4 per 100,000 residents — seventh highest in the country.  Suicide kills more Coloradans each year than homicide, car crashes, diabetes, breast cancer, flu or pneumonia.  It is the seventh leading cause of death for all Coloradans and second leading cause of death for young Coloradans.

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