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October is Mental Health Awareness Month and with the rise of both teen suicide rates in Colorado and depression and anxiety in teens and adults, it’s important to educate yourself on warning signs of suicide and to know the resources available to you. 

Did you know?

  • MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS ARE MORE PREVALENT THAN YOU MIGHT THINK. Research has shown that one in six people report experiencing a mental health concern, such as anxiety and depression, in any given week.
  • YOU CAN HELP.  Given the above statisitic, you are likely coming in contact with someone struggling quite often during your week, and being educated on resources, ways to support someone, and the signs to look for can help you be a supportive resource to others.  Even if all you do is pass on a hug and information (such as the resources in this blog post), you could be saving a life.
  • AWARENESS MATTERS.  Awareness helps reduce stigma, which encourages people to seek the help and support they need.
  • SOCIAL MEDIA ISN’T HELPING MUCH.  In today’s social media culture, we often see only curated pieces of people’s lives, leading us to believe we’re the only ones without a picture-perfect, problem-free life.  The isolation that ensues is often a leading contributor to worsening depression and anxiety.

Crisis Resources:

While there’s a plethora of resources, if you are in crisis or feeling suicidal, some tools may not provide the immediate help you need. Here are some options that will help immediately:

  • Emergency: 911
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Feeling suicidal or having suicidal thoughts is a serious matter. This toll free number is 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). You will be connected to your local crisis center and get immediate help.
  • Colorado Crisis Service: 1-844-493-8255Would I Benefit From Counseling?
  • Lifeline Chat: The same organization above also provides a web chat tool if listening or speaking is difficult (or if you just find it easier to write).
  • Crisis Text Line: Yep, you can also text for help. This handy messaging tool connects users to a crisis counselor who will help you via text. It even tells nervous users on the website exactly what they can expect to happen when they text the proper code to the number.
  • Childhelp: This hotline is a resource specifically for child and adult survivors of abuse. Callers are connected to a mental health professional and even provided treatment referrals.
  • The Trevor Project: This organization is geared toward LGBTQ individuals, specifically young people. You can call, web chat or text to get some mental health help.

Local Therapists & Resources:

Colorado’s Public mental health system currently includes 17 community mental health centers (CMHCs), 5 Behavioral Health Organizations (BHOs) and 6 specialty clinics.  You can locate more information for these resources at the links below:

Not sure if you need help?

For people who have never had a mental health crisis or no one to speak to about it, it’s sometimes difficult to tell what, if anything, is wrong. That alone can be an issue.  I’ve created a quick assessment that can shine light on whether or not you’d benefit from counseling:

Additionally, there are lots of mental health screening tests available from reputable organizations. Here’s a few to get started:

  • Mental Health America: From depression to eating disorders, this website offers a lot of screenings for users to choose from:  https://screening.mentalhealthamerica.net/screening-tools
  • Psychology Today: In addition to its searchable database for psychologists, this site offers an online assessment for people who want to take stock of their mental health: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/tests

I am always happy to be a resource in Denver, and if I’m not a good fit, I’ll work relentlessly to help connect you with a therapist that is a good fit for you.