Intervention Aroostook: 7.19.2022
PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) -The discussion of mental health is finally moving to the forefront in many circles. Our own Shawn Cunningham and Brian Bouchard are doing an ongoing team coverage series called “A Sound Mind”, looking at mental health and the resources available in the county community to help people struggling. In this week’s Intervention Aroostook, Shawn reports on the link between mental health challenges and substance use disorder for many people.
Inner voices...confusion...depression...anxiety..just a few symptoms of dealing with mental illness. Its more common than you think.
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness...
1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year.
32.1% of U.S. adults with mental illness also experienced a substance use disorder in 2020 that’s 17 million people
AMHC’s Lorraine Chamberlain says its quite common...
Lorraine Chamberlain AMHC
“people who suffer from a mental health issue may develop substance use disorder or even vica versa someone with substance use issues could actually dveelop symptoms that are associated with mental illness or struggling with their mental health.”
Shawn Cunningham NO STANDUP
But she says its good that now more and more communities and the media are recognizing the importance of having a dialogue on mental health and overall wellness...
“in many different discussions and whether that’s on a policy making to funding to service delivery and even how services are offered all of that is very good.”
s somewhat of a challenges these past three years is getting people accessed with services and resources during present day pandemic. And that too had people turning to substances when dealing with mental health issues...
“people are challenged with coping they might be using a substance to try and get through it or to feel better knowing that the pandemic a created a community overall conscious crisis everyone was affected there was nobody was immune.”
Which is why its important communities, families and peers who recognize someone may be struggling try and find help for that person. She says there are a number of programs and options to help people find both mental health treatment and treatment for substance use...
But first she says it begins with a community not demonizing people in crisis...
“its important to start a conversation assuming innocence we sometimes start a conversation assuming guilt and judgement and our language starts that off...”
If you are or know someone who is struggling contact amhc at amhc.org. Shawn Cunningham, NS 8.
Copyright 2022 WAGM. All rights reserved.