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Nearly 50 million American adults live with a mental health condition and more than half do not receive treatment. Over the past couple of years the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened the current mental health crisis and increased the number of people looking for support.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (“NAMI”) has put together the following snapshots of “fast facts”:

  • 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
  • 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year
  • 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10-14

Since 1990, when Congress officially established Mental Illness Awareness Week (“MIAW”) as the first full week of October, mental health advocates and organizations across the U.S. join to sponsor events to promote community outreach and public education concerning mental illnesses such as major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. This year, MIAW runs from Sunday, October 2nd to Saturday, October 8th.

This year at NAMI, MIAW is centered around the theme “What I Wish I Had Known” where they will be focusing on the power of lived experience. Each day throughout the week, they will be sharing the voices of people with lived experience to talk about the components of their recovery where they learned something that could have helped them sooner. The topics for the week include:

What I Wish I’d Known About…

  • Monday, Oct. 3: Stigma
  • Tuesday, Oct. 4: Medication [National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding]
  • Wednesday, Oct. 5: Therapy
  • Thursday, Oct. 6: Disclosing [National Depression Screening Day]
  • Friday, Oct. 7: Caregiving

To watch and share videos from NAMI this MIAW, click on this link.

Mental Health America (“MHA”) will spend MIAW addressing how to navigate through life with a mental health condition. For MIAW this year, MHA is mapping out tips on how to navigate life’s intersections and will explore the following topics:

  • Sunday, Oct. 2: Recognizing MIAW
  • Monday, Oct. 3: Navigating friendships and social life
  • Tuesday, Oct. 4: Navigating faith (National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding)
  • Wednesday, Oct. 5: Navigating family dynamics
  • Thursday, Oct. 6: Navigating barriers to treatment (National Depression Screening Day)
  • Friday, Oct. 7: Navigating the workplace
  • Saturday, Oct. 8: Navigating identity

To get involved and participate in MIAW with MHA this year, click on this link.

This MIAW week, take time to learn more about mental illnesses, mention the need for increased funding to people running for elected office, and reach out to someone you know that could use some support and help.

At Kantor & Kantor we work to put an end to stigma surrounding mental illness and substance use disorders and we advocate for treatment and recovery.

We are willing to stand up to the insurance companies when they deny treatment and we understand that living with a mental illness or substance use disorder is different for everyone.

If you or someone you know has been denied healthcare benefits or access to treatment, please call Kantor & Kantor for a free consultation or use our online contact form.

We understand, and we can help.