Mental Illness Awareness Week October 7-13

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September 10, 2018

For Immediate Release:

Please help mark Mental Illness Awareness Week October 7-13 by shedding some light on a hidden cause of substance abuse and suicide among America’s youth.

Anxiety and depression are becoming increasingly prevalent among America’s high school population. The Southwest CT affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) offers free resources to this population which all too often goes undiagnosed and untreated.  Parents play an essential role in recognizing and getting help for children struggling with anxiety and depression.  Instead of treating these conditions many dismiss them thinking they will just go away.   NAMI Southwest CT spokesperson Karen West says free educational classes and support groups for parents are available because caring for a child with mental health challenges can leave you feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and alone. NAMI offers an educational program called Ending the Silence  for teens, teachers and parents at no charge in an effort to open a dialogue and remove the stigma that prevents people from getting help.

Statistics from the National Alliance on Mental Illness(NAMI) indicate that 1 in 5  -youth aged 13-18 experiences a severe mental disorder at some point during their life and nearly half of children aged 8-15 with a mental health condition do NOT receive mental health services. More sobering statistics show us that more than 90% of children who die by suicide have a mental health condition.  Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for people aged 10-24. Statistics on mental illness and substance abuse indicate among the 20.2 million adults in the U.S. who experienced a substance use disorder, 50.5%—10.2 million adults—had a co-occurring mental illness.

High School becomes increasingly stressful as teens compete to get good grades, get a great date, and get into the BEST College or University.  College Admissions Expert Jill Madenberg says she has seen a rise in the number of students and parents who are overwhelmed and anxious about the college process over the past 25 years. Madenberg reminds families that being happy in college often translates to success.

Karen West will be a speaker at the Stamford High School PTO meeting on Wednesday, October 10. The meeting starts at 7pm in room 101.

Stamford High School hosts the annual College Fair for all city high school students Thursday, October 18 6:30pm- 8:30 PM.

To schedule an interview with Karen West or Jill Madenberg please call Karen at 203-984-8329.

To attend the PTO meeting or the College Fair call Susan at 203-969-4599.


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