by Jennifer McNiese, LPCC
In May we celebrate Mental Health Awareness month! It is amazing that this movement to spread awareness was started in the U.S. back in 1949, yet continues to grow and gain momentum every year. There is also a day that focuses specifically on children and adolescents that occurs in May, National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, which is on May 9th. National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day takes place in Washington D.C., and serves as a launch for activities being held nationwide. In honor of mental health awareness month here are some facts according to the National Institute on Mental Health:
- 1 in 5 children have or will have a serious mental illness.
- 50% of all lifetime mental illness begin by age 14 and 75% by age 24.
- Suicide is currently the 3rd leading cause of death in children ages 10-24
Hearing these statistics can be overwhelming, however there are many ways to get involved. Bringing mental illness into the stoplight, having open dialogue, and working on reducing associated stigmas is key. You can also wear lime green, like the ribbon above. Lime green is quickly becoming the national color for mental health awareness, and can be an easy way to open dialogue about the sometimes tough subject. Interested in other ways to get involved? Go to the National Alliance on Mental Illness website: https://www.nami.org/Get- Involved/Awareness-Events.
If you are having an event and would like to have a staff person from the Psychiatric Intake Response Center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital speak – please contact Linda Richey at (513)636-0211. We are more than happy to talk about a mental health topics, share the work we do every day and the impact that Kindervelt has on our patients.