Members of the Lincoln County Mental Health Coalition recently joined together on the River Bend Trail to create chalk art messages to promote mental health awareness. The goal of the chalk art was to get people thinking about their own mental health and what they can do to support others. The chalk messages kicked off Mental Illness Awareness Week, which is October 1 – 7. This year’s theme is “Into Mental Health: Inspired, Informed, Involved.” The campaign focuses on the power of starting conversations, learning to know the right thing to say and encouraging people to talk about mental health.
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 1 in 5 people will experience a mental health condition in their life. “Understanding that mental health conditions are common is important” says Kristin Bath, Public Health Educator for the Lincoln County Health Department. “It makes it easier for us to start a conversation and share our stories because we know that we aren’t alone and that others have gone through similar situations.”
Starting a conversation is crucial. It’s estimated that 75% of all chronic mental health conditions begin by the age of 24. Often times long delays occur between the time symptoms first appear and when people get help. Recognizing early symptoms and encouraging a loved one to get help is a critical first step. Early identification and treatment can make a big difference for successful management of a condition.
Visit https://www.nami.org/ to learn more about mental health and what you can do to support others and get involved. If you would like to become involved with the Lincoln County Mental Health Coalition, contact Kristin Bath at 715-539-1373 or firstname.lastname@example.org.