Since 1949, Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May as a time to support, destigmatize, and spread knowledge about mental health. At UTHealth Houston Student Health and Counseling Services, we join in the observance of this very important month.
Mental illness affects millions of Americans each year. In 2019, 1 in 5 adults and 1 in 6 youth experienced mental illness, equivalent to nearly 50 million Americans (Mental Health America, 2022). In the United States, anxiety disorders are the most common and affect more than 19% of the adult population annually (Mental Health America, 2022). Depression is also common and growing among both youth and adults. Alarmingly, rates of suicidal ideations continue to increase. In fact, the national rate of suicidal ideations and suicidality among adults has increased every year since 2011 (Mental Health America, 2022).
Each year Mental Health Awareness Month has a unique theme. For 2022, the theme is “Back to Basics” and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has amplified the message “Together for Mental Health.” The past few years have been a time of great challenges, and we are seeing the impact of this across the country in the rates of mental health concerns. It is time to come together for mental health, and Student Health and Counseling Services is here to help in this journey. We provide comprehensive and confidential outpatient medication management and individual psychotherapy to current students at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. To learn more about our services, please visit us online at uth.edu/studenthealth, or call us at 713-500-5171 (8AM-5PM, M-F) to schedule an appointment. We offer both in-person and virtual visits.
In the words of Schroeder Stribling, MSW, President and CEO of Mental Health America (2022): “because no matter how heavy and hard the world feels – and maybe especially because the world feels quite challenging right now – focusing on our mental health must remain a priority.”
To learn more about mental health, consider the following resources:
An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison
Broken (In the Best Possible Way) by Jenny Lawson
The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk, MD
The Unapologetic Guide to Black Mental Health: Navigate an Unequal System, Learn Tools for Emotional Wellness, and Get the Help You Deserve by Rheeda Walker, PhD
What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing by Bruce D. Perry, MD, PhD and Oprah Winfrey
Willow Weep for Me: A Black Woman’s Journey Through Depression by Meri Nana-Ama Danquah
Mental Health America (MHA): https://www.mhanational.org
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): https://www.nami.org
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): https://www.samhsa.gov
If you or someone you know is suicidal, reach out for help:
- Call our IMUT Crisis Hotline to speak with a crisis counselor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at: (713) 500-IMUT (4688).
- Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK.
- Text with a crisis counselor by texting “HOME” to 741741.
- Call 911 or seek transportation to the nearest emergency room if someone is actively suicidal.