May Is Mental Health Awareness Month
When the U.S. Surgeon General issued an advisory in December on the nation’s youth mental health crisis, he mentioned that nearly one in five children, ages 3 to 17, have a mental, emotional, developmental or behavioral disorder. Mental illness affects more than 50 million people in the U.S. During May, there’s a national movement to raise awareness about mental health and reduce the stigma of seeking help.
Quality, accessible mental health care is critical for youth as much as adults. With the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath leaving many feeling isolated and overwhelmed, the additional stigma often associated with mental health and the lack of access to affordable care has only increased the need for counseling services like those Youth In Need can provide.
Offering individual, family and group counseling services, Youth In Need provides counseling at no cost to youth 19 and younger who live or attend school in St. Louis, St. Charles or Lincoln Counties. For more information or to get started, call 314-594-5010 in St. Louis County, 636-946-0101 in St. Charles County or 636-345-4071 in Lincoln County.
Why We Need to Increase Access to Care
- 1 in 6 U.S. youth experience a mental health condition each year, and only half of them receive treatment.
- 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24.
- The average delay between onset of mental illness symptoms and treatment is 11 years.
- 1 in 5 young people report that the pandemic had a significant negative impact on their mental health.
- 1 in 10 young people under age 18 experience a mental health condition following a COVID-19 diagnosis.
The Cost of Inadequate Care
- Suicide is the second leading cause of death among people aged 10 to 34 and the 10th leading cause of death overall in the U.S.
- 4% of youth in the juvenile justice system have a diagnosed mental illness.
- High school students with significant symptoms of depression are more than twice as likely to drop out compared to their peers.
Be an Advocate
Join the National Alliance on Mental Illness’ movement to advocate for a better mental health care system by signing up for advocacy alerts and taking action when opportunities arise in your community.
Just for Fun
Get emojis that help cure the stigma. Say what other emojis can’t, and download a Sentimoji™, a free emoji sticker pack that shows care and support for friends and loved ones. Available on Android or iOS.