The Blog

Mental Health Month

Since 1949, May has been recognized as Mental Health Month. Throughout the month organizations across the country look to promote mental health as a priority for everyone, and spreading best practices for nurturing your mental health. 

Child Abuse Prevention Month

Knowing The Statistics Around Child Abuse in America

Almost 75% of children ages 2-4 in the United States in 2020 faced regular physical or emotional abuse from caregivers. Children from all socioeconomic levels are abused and neglected at the same rate, but abuse and neglect in impoverished families are more frequently reported and investigated. Similarly, race and child abuse rates are not linked, but a significant difference exists between race and the likelihood that a child will be removed from the home due to abuse. Compared to white children, African American children are four times more likely to be placed in foster care, American Indian and Native Alaskan children are three times more likely, and Hispanic children are twice as likely. No matter the race or socioeconomic status, the child factors that increase the likelihood of abuse include age, oppositional behavior, special needs, and developmental delays.

Stress Awareness Month

Every year since 1992,  we have recognized April as Stress Awareness Month. After a full year of living through the global pandemic, acknowledging, educating, and learning to cope with stress is more of a necessity now than ever.

Alcohol Awareness Month

Alcohol Awareness Month was established in 1987 to increase awareness and understanding of the causes and treatment of alcoholism, as well as highlight the need for education on the dangers of unsafe alcohol consumptions.

World Bipolar Disorder Day

March 30 is recognized as World Bipolar Disorder Day in an effort to disseminate accurate information about the disorder. Bipolar disorder is frequently misunderstood and unfortunately carries a stigma in society. It is estimated that about 2.6% of the American population, or 8.5 million individuals, carry a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. In popular culture, individuals with bipolar disorder are increasingly represented in films and television to the public. However, these characters are sometimes portrayed as “crazy” or violent. While it is encouraging that individuals with bipolar disorder are more represented, it is important that we understand that someone who has bipolar disorder is not necessarily violent, unemployable, or frequently unstable.  

Regular Sleep, Healthy Future: Sleep Awareness Week

March 14-20 is recognized as Sleep Awareness Week. The World Sleep Society’s theme for this year is “Regular Sleep, Healthy Future.” putting emphasis on the benefits of regular sleep on overall health and well-being, including mental health. 

Self-Harm Awareness Month

March is National Self-Harm Awareness Month, which highlights the education and breakdown of stigma and stereotypes associated with self-harm. Though self-harm is not considered a mental illness of its own, it is a symptom of mental illnesses like anxiety, depression, personality disorders, and eating disorders. 

Eating Disorder Recovery in the Era of COVID-19

Eating disorders, regardless of the specific diagnosis, have always come in different packages, shapes, sizes, experiences, and with their own unique challenges. But they’ve always had the same underlying constructs: disturbances in, and preoccupation with, eating and weight control behaviors, poor body image, and the resulting negative emotions stemming from these. Current statistics estimate that around 9% of the United States population- around 30 million people- will suffer from an eating disorder at some point in their lives. Of those, nearly 70% won’t seek treatment. But why?

Addressing Anger in A New Age

With one month of 2021 behind us, it is clear that we have entered a new age—an age in which a worldwide pandemic now dictates the majority of our actions and choices. Ongoing fights for social justice populate our conversations, newsfeeds, and screens and political disputes escalate to unforeseen levels. While some have cherished and embraced the silver linings presented by this new age, others may feel slighted, frustrated, powerless, or enraged. Anger is a natural human emotion, and it would not be surprising for people to experience heightened levels of anger, especially now. If you feel as though a constant stream of steam is spewing from your ears now more than ever before, know that you are not alone. 

Have Some Fun In The New Year

January 1st marked the start of the New Year, and the push for New Year's Resolutions and goal setting. According to a recent Urban Plates/Ipsos poll, 2 in every 5 Americans have made New Year's resolutions, with 47% surveyed saying healthier eating is a top priority for 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic has played a big factor in goal setting this year, in which the poll shows 42% are putting their focus on mental health.

Do Resolutions Last?
Over half of those who make resolutions do not keep them throughout the year, with 1 in 10 keeping them for less than a month. Top reasons for breaking resolutions are a lack of motivation (35%), being too busy (19%), and 1 in 10 said they did not have the support they needed to be successful.

Throughout the month of January, we will be sharing tips for establishing healthy habits in the New Year on our social media channels so our community members can create positive, obtainable goals for themselves.

Preparing for The New Year At Mid-Atlantic
As our team geared up for the holiday season, our culture champion and site director Kylee Rose, LCSW cultivated an end-of-year activity to learn new habits, be healthy, and have a little fun while doing it. Each Newark team member was given a gingerbread version of themselves that was placed on a playing board, as well as a list of activities to complete between Thanksgiving and New Year. These activities spanned practices for physical, mental, and emotional health, as well as encouraged kindness towards their peers and the community. Everyone was asked to document their progress to collect points and were able to move their gingerbread person along the game board as they did so. All activities were small and obtainable, and sharing progress acted as an accountability and support tool. Prizes were awarded at landmarks and ended with sharing their New Year’s resolutions, with the hope that some were determined from picking up new habits along the way.