October 03, 2016

By Screening for Mental Health


Did you know that depression is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for people between the ages of 15 and 44? That’s right, Major Depressive Disorder affects over 15 million American adults. With prevalence being as expansive as it is, it is likely that you know at least one person who lives with depression. And if that person isn’t aware that they live with depression or not getting the proper treatment for it, there is something you can do to help them.

You can tell them about National Depression Screening Day (NDSD).

Colleges, workplaces and community organizations across the country have participated in National Depression Screening Day for the past 25 years. This awareness event is focused on providing screenings for depression and other common mental health disorders as well as resources for finding help in their communities.

In addition to depression, individuals can be screened for generalized anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, alcoholism and other substance use disorders. There is also a screening parents can take on behalf of their adolescent children.

Early detection and treatment of mental health conditions can prevent someone from reaching a point of crisis, such as suicide. While suicide may seem like something you may never have to talk to someone about, consider these statistics:

  • Each year 42,773 Americans die by suicide.
  • 70% of individuals tell someone or give warning signs before taking their own life.
  • Suicide rates increased by 24% from 1999 to 2014.

This National Depression Screening Day—held on Thursday, October 6—we are encouraging everyone to take advantage of the free resources available to get insight into your own mental health.

Visit HelpYourselfHelpOthers.org or StopaSuicide.org for more information.

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NAMI HelpLine is available M-F, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET. Call 800-950-6264,
text “helpline” to 62640, or chat online. In a crisis, call or text 988 (24/7).