Shedding Light Upon Undiagnosed Mental Illness
This year, National Depression Screening Day falls on October 7th, 2021. National Depression Screening Day brings light to those who are directly affected by mental health struggles while also educating individuals about depression. The screening process brings awareness to people who are not diagnosed, but are greatly impacted by their mental health and may need to seek treatment.
National Depression Screening Day is crucial because millions of Americans are unaware of their mental health condition. Mental health directly or indirectly affects the individual themselves, loved ones, friends, and co-workers. Mental illnesses also unfortunately comes with a stigma to those affected, therefore, this national screening day spreads awareness and educates about mental health to reduce negative stereotypes.
"It's so important to maintain all types of health—including mental health. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), in 2020, U.S. adults reported a considerable increase in adverse mental health conditions associated with COVID-19," explains Lisa Romano, LPC, ACS, Director of Outpatient and IOP Services. "Completing a screen is like a "check in" for your feelings. By encouraging dialogue about mental health and connections to behavioral health resources, it can lead to increased education, can raise awareness, and reduce stigma."
A typical depression screening consists of questions about how you have been feeling recently, discuss topics of having little interest in doing activities, feeling down, depressed, or hopeless. Although the screenings are not a diagnosis, the results can bring attention to symptoms that may indicate depression. Screenings may advise seeing a doctor or a mental health professional as next steps.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, about one third of those who suffer from severe depression receive treatment from a mental health professional. Individuals who are affected by depression often mistake symptoms to be a part of every day life. Common depression symptoms include:
- constant feelings of sadness, anxiety, or emptiness
- disruptions in sleep (not enough sleeping, early morning awakening, or over-sleeping)
- change in appetite and weight loss or gain
- loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed
- fatigue or energy loss
- thoughts of death or suicide
National Depression Screening Day is created to bring attention to those suffering in silence, often without even realizing it. Don' hesitate to reach out to your doctor or take a screening today. There are many free online screening tests you can take right away:
If you or a loved one are experiencing struggles with mental health, clinicians in our Counseling & Wellness Centers are here to help.
Call our main number at 844-4-ACENDA (844-422-3632 X9500) for more information or to schedule an appointment.