Mental Health Awareness Month 2023

Mental Health Awareness Month 2023

Mental Health Awareness Month

Background Information: Mental Health Awareness Month, recognized every year during the month of May, focuses on the importance of mental health awareness. It is crucial to reduce the stigma surrounding behavioral health issues and recognize the changing attitudes of addressing these issues and utilizing successful behavioral health services.

The History of MHAwareness Month was first celebrated in 1949, which is when the Mental Health America organization, known then as the National Committee for Mental Hygiene first recognized nationally the importance of bringing awareness to behavioral health.

The Association was founded by Clifford Whittingham Beers. Born in Connecticut in 1876, Beers was one of five children in his family who all suffered from mental illness and psychological distress. Throughout their lives Beers and members of his family spent time in hospitals and mental institutions. During these experiences Beers knew firsthand the mistreatment, and stigmatism that was so much a part of mental illness.
In 1908, Beers and his colleagues founded the National Committee for Mental Hygiene to address and fight against the inadequate treatment of mental health. In 1948, the organization’s name was officially renamed to the World Federation of Mental Health.

The theme of MHA Month for 2023 is , “Look Around, Look Within.” The aim of Mental Health Professionals surrounding this theme is to, “emphasize the ways that our surroundings—like safe and stable housing, healthy homes, lives, neighborhoods and cities, and nature—affect our mental health.” The urgent need to raise awareness and reduce the bias and stigma that surrounds behavioral health issues continue to be the focus and importance in helping to highlight issues of mental illness and addiction. The recognition of establishing support in the integration of behavioral and physical health work to provide improvements in addressing mental health issues and can provide improvements in mental health care.

The importance of MHA Month is to raise awareness about mental health issues. In addition, this month focuses on the impacts these issues can have on individual lives, families, health care providers, and society. Education and advocacy are essential to raise awareness about emotional, social, and psychological needs and provide information about available behavioral health support services. Open communication about mental health can drastically reduce the misapprehension of mental health issues and aid in providing the much-needed resources and support to those in need.

Com Psych Guidance Resources Worldwide Mental Health Awareness Toolkit

National Institute of Mental Health Digital Sharables:

Better Help/Ways to Participate: Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental Health Awareness Brain