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It's high time to cure the stigma of mental illness



Mention mental illness, and far too often, the focus quickly turns to its tragic results playing in courtrooms, prisons and cemeteries.

Headlines often come from sensational cases like that of a mother with bipolar disorder who admitted to killing her two toddler children. We have also recognized that mental illness is an important entry route for many victims of the threatening opiate epidemic and violence in our country. And we've learned that bullying-induced anxiety disorders have caused much of the increase in adolescent suicide in recent years.

In these and many other cases, attention, intervention and treatment have been able to prevent the resulting tragic consequences. With the nation announcing Mental Health Month in May, it's time to shift focus. To begin with, we need to reduce the negative attitudes and judgments about mental disorders to increase survival rates. Therefore, the theme of the 201

8 Observance is "Cure Stigma".

The extent of mental illness in the United States is enormous. One in every five American adults has a mental illness every year, and one in every 25 people expects a serious, potentially life-threatening mental illness, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

At first glance, these rates may be surprisingly high for some observers. On closer examination, however, many of those affected by a mental illness are most likely to suffer silently. Across the country, 57 percent of adults with mental disorders received no treatment or help for fear of stigmatization, a stigma that too often causes prejudice, distrust and even violence.

Of course, there is a lack of treatment for mental illness – such as lack of treatment for any physical illness – invites only to worsening symptoms and possibly destructive results.

IN OHIO AND MAHONING COUNTY

As Tracy Plouck, director of the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, told members of the Ohio General Assembly: "We should not wait until people have serious trouble before they get the necessary Provide care. "



It is thanks to them that Plouck has worked hard to create strong public and public-private partnerships that inspire broader treatment and healing throughout the state.

In our corner of Ohio, such initiatives have shown great successes. Under the guidance of Duane J. Piccirilli, director of the Mahonian County Mental Health and Recovery Board, support and reintegration programs for mentally ill inmates have flourished in Mahoning District Prison. The district agency has also partnered with Mercy Health to provide safe rooms in hospital emergency rooms for patients with behavioral crises.

MCMHRB has also teamed up with the Mahoning County Health Department to fund the DAWN (Naloxone Deaths Prevention) project by providing funding and access to life-saving first aid medications to resuscitate overdose victims of opiates These and other positive and promising initiatives, Ohio still has room for improvement. In a nationwide analysis of Mental Health America in 2018, Buckeye State ranks in a less than notable 20th place in terms of prevalence of mental disorders and easy access to care and treatment facilities.

The lower the ranking of a state, the greater the likelihood of these inglorious consequences: high levels of child abuse, low graduation rates, high poverty and homelessness, high unemployment and a greater propensity to violence.

and the early treatment of mental illness can prevent or prevent a number of personal and societal adversities. For this purpose, many play an important role.

Our mental health district councils must continue to look for strategies for effective intervention and funding to support optimal care.

Our state legislation must recognize the negative spillover effect of mental health disease on a variety of the state's most urgent priorities, not least the taming of the monstrous opiate epidemic. It must then assist in the development of public policies that most effectively meet those needs.

Finally, as individuals, we must replace stigmatizing attitudes with compassion and sincere will to help.

We hope that cooperation from all sides will help to significantly reduce the high toll that mental illness has on life and communities.


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