Millions of Americans are impacted by a mental health disorder. Whether you or a loved one is struggling with a mental illness, it’s important to understand depression because it can affect everyone around the individual living with it. For this reason, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has dedicated the first week of October to mental illness awareness week. In addition to this week-long campaign, National Depression Screening Day takes place on October eighth. One way you can take part is getting screened on depression screening day. Keep reading below to find out what this day is all about and where you can get help if you’re struggling with depression.
What Is National Depression Screening Day?
As the name suggests, National Depression Screening Day raises awareness and screens adults for depression. Above all, this day is one of the many ways mental health advocates and mental health centers help individuals get the help they need. Depression oftentimes goes unnoticed, which makes it difficult for those around you to know you’re struggling. National Depression Screening Day makes it easier for members of the community to learn about depression, screen for the disorder, and discover places to seek treatment.
Why Is Screening for Depression Important?
Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Health conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes can be difficult to spot without the help of a medical professional. The same goes for depression. Moreover, many individuals who struggle with depression aren’t aware they have it until it interferes with daily life. Depression screenings are a quick and easy way to find out if your lingering feelings of sadness or fatigue are a sign of more than just a case of the blues.
National Depression Screening Day can help you determine if you’re experiencing symptoms of the disorder through a simple questionnaire. Above all, it’s important to remember that health screenings are designed to provide you with the best form of care according to your needs. Therefore it’s in your best interest to answer the questions as honestly as possible.
It’s important to screen for depression because:
- Screenings are clinically effective in getting help
- Clinical depression is a serious mental health condition
- Some people suffering from depression think their symptoms are a “normal part of life”
- Depression can affect individuals of all ages, genders, races, and socioeconomic classes
- Less than half of those suffering from depression get the help they need
- Depression commonly co-occurs with other disorders or physical health conditions
- Depression can lead to suicide
Mental illnesses don’t go away on their own. This is why seeking treatment when you recognize the signs is important for starting a safe recovery. Although mental health conditions such as depression don’t have a cure, they can be managed through therapy and medication to increase your quality of life. However, symptoms can worsen without proper treatment and cause additional health issues or lead to addiction.
Who Should Get Screened?
Not everyone who is suffering from depression knows it. That’s why days like National Depression Screening Day can help you reflect on your mental health and whether or not seeking help can improve how you feel. Depression is one of the most common mental health conditions in the United States. It can affect anyone at any age, making screenings an effective form of preventative care if you’re at a higher risk because of family history. As a result, finding ways to manage your mental health as soon as possible can improve your mental health and overall well-being.
Signs You May Be Struggling with Depression
National Depression Screening Day can help you determine if you’re exhibiting signs of a mood disorder. With that said, you may be struggling with depression if you:
- Experience persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness, or loneliness
- Frequently sleep too much or too little
- Experience a noticeable change in appetite or weight
- Are no longer interested in hobbies or activities that used to bring you joy
- Often feel restless or irritable
- Have difficulty concentrating, focusing, or remembering things
- Feel fatigued or a loss of energy despite getting enough sleep
- Have thoughts of self-harm or suicidal ideation
Keep in mind that screenings are not a professional diagnosis. However, screenings can detect if you are experiencing symptoms and recommend that you should seek mental health services. If you are experiencing five or more symptoms listed during your screen for depression for more than two weeks or if the symptoms interfere with your daily life, you should get in touch with a physician or mental health professional.
Where to Get Help if You’re Depressed
National Depression Screening Day is an opportunity to improve your mental health. The answers to your questionnaire can determine if an intensive treatment program is the most effective way to improve your symptoms. Here you’ll work with physicians and mental health professionals to get to the underlying cause of your symptoms. We also provide crisis care for adults who are in acute distress. We’re here to help you manage your depression at every stage.
But if you’re struggling with substance abuse as a way to cope with your depression, a dual diagnosis program can help you. Through this treatment program, you can discover healthier coping mechanisms to replace drug and alcohol use. The dual diagnosis program addresses the relationship between your depression and addiction to help you manage all of your symptoms. Moreover, those who undergo dual diagnosis treatment for co-occurring disorders are more likely to stay sober after completing treatment.
The treatment modalities available at Springbrook Behavioral Hospital include:
- Individual therapy
- Group therapy
- Family therapy
- Supplemental therapy
- Medication management
You can also transition to the partial hospitalization program once you’ve completed your residential treatment or if a lower level of care is most suitable for your needs. Whichever program is right for you, the staff at our center are here to help you overcome your mental health battles.
How Springbrook Behavioral Hospital Can Help
You don’t have to cope with depression alone. That’s why you should dedicate this year’s National Depression Screening Day to improving your mental wellness. Reach out to Springbrook Behavioral Hospital at 352-600-3288 or submit a confidential contact form online. We’re here to support you whenever you’re ready.