Millions of Americans live with a mental disorder every day, and each year the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) recognizes May as Mental Health Awareness Month. The theme surrounding the month changes, but the underlying support for those living with a mental health issue never changes. The goal for May is to fight negative stigmas, provide support, and advocate for policies that support the millions and their families.

Join us this month as Brain Forest Centers does their part in educating the public about mental health and why it’s important. Other than providing neurofeedback therapies for a variety of mental health conditions, we also provide educational materials year-round. Here’s what we want you to know about mental health.

How Many People are Affected?

According to the World Health Organization, one in four individuals will suffer from a mental health disorder at some point in life, and more than 450 million people are currently living with a condition worldwide. Some of the most common mental health concerns include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Substance Abuse & Addiction
  • PTSD

Unfortunately, because of the stigma surrounding these conditions, most people suffering do not seek out treatment. Educating the public about these disorders can help shift the conversation and bring mental health awareness to the forefront of medicine and treatment options.

In recent years, large mental health institutes are becoming less popular. These facilities are often no longer the best course of treatment and can reduce social skills, have excessive restrictions, violate human rights, cause dependency, and reduce rehabilitation opportunities.

Caring for Your Mental Health

If you’ve suffered or are currently suffering from a mental health disorder, there are several ways you can take care of yourself at home while you seek medical treatment or therapy.

  • Value yourself—Be kind to yourself and avoid self-criticism. Find things you enjoy and dedicate time for your hobbies. If you like puzzles, do a crossword. If you enjoy physical activities, try a new spin class. Whatever you decide, do it because you want to.
  • Care for your body—Eating right, drinking enough water, staying away from tobacco use, and drinking alcohol in moderation can all impact your mental health. Exercise can help fight depression and encourage a normal sleep schedule, which can help your brain recover every day.
  • Surround yourself with people—Stay connected to friends and family who care about you and your wellbeing. Make regular plans with someone you enjoy being around at least once a week, and check in with your regular family members often. Maintaining these connections will ensure you have the support system you need if you find yourself in a mental health valley.
  • Set realistic goals—Setting reasonable goals in your professional life, personal life, and education can give you a sense of accomplishment. Aim high but keep things realistic. Write them down and work towards them. Find a life or wellness coach who can help guide you through each step and help you recover when things don’t go as planned.
  • Share with others—If you want those around you to have mental health awareness, then it’s essential that you share your own story. Be honest about the highs and lows and communicate when you’re not feeling yourself. Your loved ones and friends will be more understanding and can solidify your support system.

Train Your Brain

If you’re looking for a mental health treatment that doesn’t involve medications and can help you gain control over your mind, then Brain Forest Centers is right for you! Our neurofeedback programs are designed to be pain-free, effective, and noninvasive. We recognize mental health awareness all year long and are here to help you retrain the pathways in your brain through positive reinforcement training exercises. To find out how we can help you or your family with ADD/ADHD, anxiety, depression, autism, or PTSD, contact us for a free consultation.