In a state ranked 49th for mental health funding, with one of the largest uninsured populations, and an ever increasing number of incarcerated people, Florida is in desperate need of mental health care reform. Today, the three facilities that hold the highest number of individuals with mental illnesses are not psychiatric hospitals, but jails. The criminal justice system has become the “de facto” mental health care system, simply because there are so many persons with psychiatric disabilities who are not receiving treatment. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 40% of adults with serious mental illnesses are arrested at some point (usually for petty crimes like loitering or disturbing the peace). Read More >>
Regardless of the context, stress is a part of human life. Whether it is finals week, a deadline at work, a personal issue, or financial pressure, an inability to manage stress can have negative implications on an individual’s physical, emotional, and mental well-being. However, stress can also be a powerful motivator when handled appropriately. That said, stress management techniques are not innate in each individual; they take awareness and practice. Below are some suggestions on coping with stress from both a personal and clinical perspective.
For Family Members/Mental Illness and The Family Active listening skills are not exclusive to clinicians. In fact, one of the most helpful things family members can do for their loved one is to practice active listening. Oftentimes, individuals with mental illnesses believe, through their life experiences, that they do not have a voice. One of Guardian Behavioral Health Foundation’s core objectives is to give those individuals a voice in society. This starts within the family unit and spreads outward into the community. When family members actively listen and communicate with one another, they open the door for change and new experiences – but it is not easy. Even trained professionals can make mistakes that lend themselves toward unhealthy communication. The following are common mistakes to avoid: Interrupting Focusing on what you are going to say, and what you are feeling rather than what the other person is actually saying Interrogating, … Continue reading
The impact of stigma and discrimination on the mentally ill is well documented. Being a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (LGBT) individual compounded with a mental health diagnosis just magnifies the effects of discrimination and stigma, and these individuals often confront seemingly insurmountable barriers to health care. In a 2011 study, 50% of a sample population reported having to teach their medical providers about transgender care. (transequality.com/ngltf) In a 2006 survey of medical students, 15% reported mistreatment of LGBT students within the school, and 17% of LGBT students considered their school environment to be hostile. (AAMC) In order to foster healthy communities, it is crucial that we bring awareness to this issue, and here are a few reasons why: LGBT youth are 2 to 3 times more likely to attempt suicide. LGBT populations have the highest rate of tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use. LGBT youth are more likely to … Continue reading
“Kick the Stigma!” event on January 17th was a great success!! Thank you to all of those who sponsored and attended. Stay tuned for news about our next event!
The Affordable Care Act has increased healthcare insurance coverage by more than 25% and is projected to cover more than 30 million people by 2017. However, it will also exacerbate the existing barriers to mental health treatment and quality of care problems. This shortage will be felt most deeply by an already overextended system providing mental health care to veterans. Continue reading
Guardian Behavioral Health Foundation wrote a letter to the Sun Sentinel addressing mental illness and how it affects everyone. The Sun Sentinel ran it in today’s paper. Please read it below and remember that we all need to work together. Continue reading
Mental health treatment is for everyone, and you never know when you might need it. A mental health disorder is not always obvious or easy to identify, and it can sometimes come on without warning. This is particularly true after a crisis. Situations like national disasters, violence, death, or even accidents can have long-term effects on people, even if they were not directly involved. Each family member may be affected in different ways, all of which can benefit from treatment. Continue reading
Mental health counseling may be just the thing to cut down on obesity, a condition that is often misunderstood. Obesity has strong connections with mental illness. In fact, adults with depression are 60% more likely to be obese than those without. Anxiety, eating disorders, and stress can all contribute to obesity; contrary to popular opinion, it is not simply a question of willpower. Continue reading
Behavioral health services have many benefits to individuals and society. They can decrease the overall costs of health care by addressing important mental health disorders, reduce the strain on our medical professionals, and improve your health. Continue reading