May is Mental Health Matters Month

Our mental health has a powerful influence on our quality of life. It affects how we feel, how we see ourselves, how we handle stress, how we make choices, and how we relate to others.  Our mental health deserves the same attention as our physical health but is far too often overlooked or ignored.

The month of May is Mental Health Matters Month.  Now is the time to check in on our own mental health and the mental health of the people we care about.  Please support and encourage those you are connected with to take action to attend to mental health needs.

Behavioral Health Services staff invite you, particularly, to “Take Action 4 Mental Health” on Saturday, May 14, from 10 am to 2 pm at Library Park in Lakeport.  The event will have a booth and information.  Also, check out Lake County Prevention on Facebook for more events and information.

“Taking Action 4 Mental Health” starts with you!  Check-in on your own mental health and the mental health of someone you care about.  You may find self-care activities or other support to give your mind and body an opportunity to recharge. 

When you check in with others, let them know you’re there for them if they want to talk.  Help them get support from other sources if they are in need.  To get started, visit the “Take Action 4 Mental Health” website’s check-in page at https://takeaction4mh.com/.

Most people have times when they feel sad, stressed out, anxious, or just weighed down.  If “a few bad days” occur often, and/or last more than two weeks, this can be a sign of something more serious.

If you recognize signs additional support may be needed, for yourself or someone else, take time to learn more about self-care, services, and supports available.  Find a positive path forward. 

If you feel overwhelmed, or mental health challenges interfere with your life, it’s time to seek help.  Reach out and connect with family, friends, peer support groups, or other resources available in your community.

Lake County Behavioral Health Services also offers many community trainings for suicide prevention. The trainings provide tools to start challenging, but important, conversations about mental health and suicide.

These trainings are available for the entire community, as well as schools and agencies. For more information, please contact Kendra Boyce, Prevention Specialist at Kendra.Boyce@lakecountyca.gov or 707-533-7358, or Michael Mos, Prevention Specialist, at Michael.Mos@lakecountyca.gov

  • Know the Signs is designed to teach people how to: recognize warning signs of suicide; find the words to get the conversation started; and reach out to the resources available.  You are not alone. There is HOPE.
  • Question Persuade Refer (QPR) is a short training that offers tools for emergency response when someone is in a mental health crisis; this information can save lives. 
  • Adult Mental Health First Aid teaches adults how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illness and substance use disorders in their peers, friends, and family.  This 8-hour training offers skills needed to reach out and provide initial support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem, and help connect them to appropriate care.
  • Youth Mental Health First Aid teaches adults who work with youth to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illness and substance use disorders.  This 6.5-hour training builds the skills needed to reach out and provide initial support to children and adolescents (ages 6-18) who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem and help connect them to appropriate care.
  • Teen Mental Health First Aid teaches high school students how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illness and substance use disorders among their friends and peers.  Students are equipped with skills to have supportive conversations with their friends, and get a responsible and trusted adult to take over, as necessary.  This training, designed to be delivered in schools or community sites, encompasses three interactive classroom sessions of 90 minutes each, or six sessions of 45 minutes each.

If you, or another person, are in a crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).  You can also call the Lake County Behavioral Health Services Crisis Line, 1-800-900-2075, to speak with a trained counselor who can help.

Texting HELP to 741741 is another simple way to connect with someone when you are feeling depressed, anxious, or just need to talk to someone, or you are or someone you know is in crisis.

The Take Action 4 Mental Health website, https://takeaction4mh.com/, also offers many support resources to help children and youth and the LGBTQIA+ community, and substance use and sexual assault and domestic violence hotline. There are many support options to try; each person can explore what works best for them.

This May, let’s all step up and do something for ourselves and those around us.

Let’s take action for our individual and collective mental health in Lake County.

Remember: It’s Ok to Not Be OK.

For more information, please contact Carrie Manning at Lake County Behavioral Health Services at 707-274-9101 or Carrie.Manning@lakecountyca.gov.

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