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  • Writer's pictureJaclyn Wasco, M.Ed., MA, LPC, NCC

Mental Health Awareness Month

Billy Joel.  Kurt Cobain. 

Beyonce.  Dolly Parton.

Ernest Hemingway.  F. Scott Fitzgerald. 

Sylvia Plath.  Tennessee Williams.

Ryan Reynolds.  Emma Stone. 

Carrie Fisher.  Dwayne Johnson.

Simone Biles.  Michael Phelps. 

Naomi Osaka.  Lebron James.

Musical artists.  Literary Writers. 

Actors.  Athletes.  

Noteworthy, recognizable names.

All experienced some mental health conditions in their lives, despite having fame, notoriety, and, in many cases, wealth.

Since its inception in 1949, May has been Mental Health Awareness Month.  Its goals are to highlight and recognize the challenges that those affected by mental health conditions experience, provide education and resources to communities, and work to end the stigma of mental illness that is still present in our culture.  

According to current research and estimates, 1 in 5 adults in America cope with a mental health condition each year, yet only half of those adults engage in treatment.  It is incredibly important to recognize signs of mental health conditions in children and adolescents, as 50% of those that will experience mental illness start by 14 years of age.  That estimate increases to 75% by the time young adults reach 25.  With knowledge of the prevalence and symptoms of mental illness, we can help current and future generations receive the aid they need and deserve without reproach.

If you or a loved one experience symptoms such as low mood, increased anger and irritability, emotional outbursts, low energy, sleep problems, social withdrawal, lost in interest, and/or difficulty concentrating, reach out and ask for help.  You are not alone.  You can do this.  You are strong.  You are important.

Mental health awareness is for everyone.

ISPO (2023).  13 sports stars who are committed to mental health.  

Lifespan (2024).  The Importance of Mental Health Awareness Month.  

National Alliance on Mental Health (2024).  Mental Health Awareness Month. 

National Alliance on Mental Health (2024).  300 Famous Individuals with Mental Health issues, 

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