National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day falls on May 10th this year.  This awareness day aims to shine a spotlight on children’s mental illness and their mental health. HPA/LiveWell in Albany, New York joins the campaign to reinforce the importance of positive mental health in a child’s overall well-being and quality of life.

Children’s Mental Health

In the United States alone, it is estimated 15 million children struggle with mental health issues.  Unfortunately, even more children are at risk of developing a mental health disorder due to a variety of risk factors including:

  • Family – instability in the family, parental divorce, or inconsistent and/or harsh disciplinary patterns all contribute to a child’s chances of struggling with mental illness.
  • School/peers – children who experience peer rejection and/or bullying, academic failure, or poor attendance are far more likely to suffer from mental health issues.
  • Life events – emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, death of a loved one, or other traumatic life events all increase a child’s likelihood of developing a mental illness.
  • Society/Community – if a child experiences discrimination, socioeconomic disadvantage, or lacks support and is therefore isolated, it is far more probable he or she will experience mental health issues.

Because the number of children with mental health issues is so high, there is a demand for children’s psychology services and supports that meet the need of this population.

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

Mental illness tends to carry a stigma, and thus, is not often talked about. This is especially true when it comes to children’s mental health.  Because of this, the importance of raising awareness about the mental health struggles and needs specific to children is of utmost importance.  If you want to be a part of spreading the word, there are many ways to participate in and support National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day.

  • Post on social media – creating a post on one (or all) of the various social media sites is a simple way to contribute to this importance cause, and an easy way to reach a great deal of people at once.
  • Attend an event – check the website of your city’s mental/behavioral health network for local events in support of National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day.
  • Volunteer – find out what awareness day events are happening, and offer to help out.
  • Donate – donating money to National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day is a positive way to make a difference. Donate what you can, as every dollar makes a difference.

To find out more about National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, or to learn about services for your child, contact HPA/LiveWell in Albany, New York at 518-218-1188.

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