Even if someone decides to do an on-line evidence-based depression assessment such as Beck’s Depression Inventory, or the PHQ-9, and even if someone scores as clinically depressed, they may not disclose to anyone the results and/or may still not get help, depending on their own cultural history, family history of acceptance of mental illness and/or fears of medication and therapy. Yet, getting therapy is VITAL to successfully treating mental health issues. While psychiatric medications can help alleviate the symptoms, the research shows that psychotherapy is the best treatment of choice. As well, many people don’t want to take medications and would prefer a more holistic approach to mental health treatment – therapy with yoga and/or nutrition can be an excellent combination. Utilizing a combination of healing professionals can provide the support for mind, body and spirit.
Knowing some underlying risk factors to developing mental health and substance abuse can help people to know if they are at a higher risk and then get support early on. The research around Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) and its relationship to the on-set of depression, anxiety or substance abuse has shown the correlation between the number of trauma events in childhood and the increasing chances of developing a mental health illness. An on-line assessment can help determine the risks you or someone you know might have of developing health and mental health illness. If you are concerned, reach out sooner rather than later so that you can prevent issues from developing and/or treat them early on.
Here are 5 steps to getting the help you need.
- Tell at least one person that you are concerned about yourself. Choose someone you know and trust and who has your welfare in mind.
- Go on-line to search for a therapist in your area – through Psychology Today or a search on the web and check out each counselor’s profile to learn more about their approach and treatment of mental health issues.
- If you are looking for a more holistic and integrative approach, consider practices that offer more than counseling, such as acupuncture, massage, nutrition and/or yoga. Practices that offer this can use a team approach to supporting the individual, couple or family.
- Talk with your doctor or pediatrician to start so that they can assess and suggest referrals.
- Remember that you are not alone – many, many people suffer from anxiety and/or depression or know someone who does so sharing with someone will often provide the support and guidance you need.
Finally, there are many resources and hotlines for support– here are a few.
List of HOTLINES in the US: https://psychcentral.com/lib/telephone-hotlines-and-help-lines/