Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Illness Awareness Week takes place from October 6 – 12, 2019. This year, October 10 is World Mental Health Day and National Depression Screening Day.

The Mental Health Association is an organization that offers statistics, screenings and information on the primary diagnoses of mental health. 

  • Nearly 1 in 5 American adults will have a diagnosable mental health condition in any given year.
  • 46 percent of Americans will meet the criteria for a diagnosable mental health condition sometime in their life, and half of those people will develop conditions by the age of 14.

At, there are available screenings that will help you determine if you are having any mental health concerns:  These screenings suggest that:

  • 74%of people score positive or show moderate to severe signs of a mental health condition.
  • 78% of people are likely to have a substance use disorder.
  • 72% of people show signs of moderate to severe anxiety.

Many people do not seek treatment in the early stages of mental illnesses because they don’t recognize the symptoms.

The Mental Health Association reports 7 major mental health conditions, including Anxiety, Bipolar disorder, Psychosis, Eating disorders, Depression, PTSD, Addiction/Substance Use Disorder.  As October 10th of National Depression Screening Day, the Mental Health Association offers the following questions to ask yourself about depression:

 Do you experience:

  • A persistent sad, anxious or “empty” mood
  • Sleeping too little, early morning awakening, or sleeping too much
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss, or increased appetite and weight gain
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed
  • Restlessness or irritability
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Screenings are not a professional diagnosis. Screenings point out the presence or absence of depressive symptoms and provide a referral for further evaluation if needed. You should see your doctor or a qualified mental health professional if you experience five or more of these symptoms for longer than two weeks or if the symptoms are severe enough to interfere with your daily routine.

Claudia A. Liljegren, MSW, LICSW

Clinical Psychotherapist