Mental Health America Blog https://staging.mhanational.org/ en No One Size Fits All: The Case for a Balanced Approach to Telehealth and In-Person Care https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/no-one-size-fits-all-case-balanced-approach-telehealth-and-person-care <span>No One Size Fits All: The Case for a Balanced Approach to Telehealth and In-Person Care </span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-08/pexels-anna-shvets-4225920.jpg" alt="Person talking on a video call with a healthcare worker in a mask." typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 08/09/2021 - 13:59</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">August 10, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p style="margin-bottom:11px"><em>By Leslie Lundt, M.D, Executive Medical Director at Neurocrine Biosciences</em></p> <p>Telehealth use <a href="https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2772537">rapidly increased</a> in the early months of the pandemic, fueled by an unprecedented expansion of coverage and reimbursement by health insurers. Because these changes were a response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, they were intended to be temporary. They may not stay temporary, however, as stakeholders, from government to health insurers, weigh whether and how to make the current flexibilities a permanent part of health care in the future.</p> <p>Today telehealth is at the center of health policy discussions, but many questions remain unanswered. Will the emerging research on telehealth and health outcomes align with public perceptions of telehealth? How will this research be used to inform the types of visits — in-person or virtual — people have with their doctors? And, fundamentally, do we have enough information even to determine which type of visit is best when choosing between telehealth and in-person care, particularly when it comes to mental health care? &nbsp;Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all answer and flexibility must be a central component of any path forward. As Congress and the Biden Administration examine which path to take, they should consider an approach that uses telehealth as an option that complements <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/29/opinion/virtual-remote-medicine-covid.html?searchResultPosition=1">— but is not a replacement for — in-person care</a>.</p> <p>Face-to-face visits should remain an essential part of health care for many people who benefit from being seen in-person by their doctor. This is especially true for diseases and disorders where physical exams are critical for screening, diagnosis and treatment. People with involuntary movement disorders, like <a href="https://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/all-disorders/tardive-dyskinesia-information-page">tardive dyskinesia</a> (TD), fall into this group. TD is a condition usually caused by prolonged use of antipsychotic medications by those with serious mental illness. For people at high risk of TD, the American Psychiatric Association’s <a href="https://psychiatryonline.org/doi/pdf/10.1176/appi.books.9780890424841">guidelines</a> recommend physical screening for the condition occur <em>at least </em>every six months so that doctors can note even minor changes in movements.</p> <p>With telehealth, there are substantial limitations on a doctor’s <a href="https://www.hmpgloballearningnetwork.com/site/pcn/article/can-aims-exam-be-conducted-telepsychiatry">ability to conduct a thorough physical exam</a>: some changes may not be noticed over telehealth, where video quality or the inability to see a person’s full body can hinder a doctor’s evaluation.&nbsp;This means that the use of telehealth without periodic in-person appointments can lead to missed or inappropriate diagnosis, and potentially incorrect treatment. In fact, experts in the field of movement disorders argue <a href="https://movementdisorders.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/mds.28297">telehealth is not a substitute for face-to-face visits</a>, but rather a helpful addition to clinical care.</p> <p>Clinical experts also note telehealth can impact a person’s <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7262488/">ability to provide a full medical history</a> and make it harder for people to form doctor-patient relationships that make care more empathetic and conversation more honest. Similarly, although many psychiatrists indicated they were “pleasantly surprised” they could meet a person’s needs via telehealth, the majority indicated a strong preference to <a href="https://ps.psychiatryonline.org/doi/10.1176/appi.ps.202000250">return to in-person care</a> following the pandemic for various reasons that include the need for privacy and building an effective doctor-patient relationship.<span style="font-size:11.0pt;line-height:107%; font-family:&quot;Calibri&quot;,sans-serif;mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;;mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi; mso-ansi-language:EN-US;mso-fareast-language:EN-US;mso-bidi-language:AR-SA"> </span></p> <p>The patient voice is a critically important part of the conversation about access to and quality of health care.&nbsp;A leading coalition for people living with chronic diseases argues the “appropriate use of telehealth services <a href="https://nationalhealthcouncil.org/nhc-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-comment-letter/">requires a balanced approach</a> and should be based on patient preferences, needs and goals.”&nbsp;These advocates also note telehealth should be used with, not instead of, face-to face visits, and patients and providers should together determine the best setting — virtual or in-person — to achieve health care goals.</p> <p>Where does this leave Congress and the Biden Administration? Clearly, post-pandemic telehealth policies must be flexible enough to support the unique needs of all people — those who may receive the care they need via telehealth, and those who need at least some in-person care. Telehealth policy should protect in-person visits as an essential part of health care moving forward, so everyone has access to care that meets their preferences and needs.</p> <p>***</p> <p>Leslie Lundt, M.D., is an internationally recognized clinician and educator in the neuropsychiatric field. She is board-certified in psychiatry and has over 30 years’ experience in active clinical and research practice. <em>Dr. Lundt is also Executive Medical Director at Neurocrine Biosciences.&nbsp; &nbsp;</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/policy" hreflang="en">policy</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19679&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="awGV6LWdw1AuLmpo13fF5HBu-kbXEpuhIjSXDyKm7GQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 09 Aug 2021 17:59:39 +0000 JCheang 19679 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/no-one-size-fits-all-case-balanced-approach-telehealth-and-person-care#comments Celebrating Bebe Moore Campbell https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/celebrating-bebe-moore-campbell <span>Celebrating Bebe Moore Campbell</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/Photo%20of%20Bebe%20Moore%20Campbell.jpg" alt="Photo of Bebe Moore Campbell" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 07/29/2021 - 09:29</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 29, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>MHA's affiliates across the country make a big impact in their communities. Every affiliate is a unique organization providing programs that best serve community needs. Mental Health Connecticut is headquartered in West Hartford and serves the people of Connecticut.</em></p> <p><em>By Jacquilyn Davis, DEI &amp; Engagement Coordinator, Mental Health Connecticut, Inc.</em></p> <p>Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month was formally recognized&nbsp; in 2008, thanks to the tireless advocacy of nearly 100 individuals who co-sponsored a Congressional resolution to bring awareness to the unique struggles minority communities face along their mental health journeys. Bebe spearheaded this movement and after she passed away in 2006, her fellow advocates took it forward to passage two years later. Bebe’s legacy is evident in the dedication of those who fought to create this month of awareness in her name and continue to celebrate and honor her lifetime of accomplishments.&nbsp;</p> <p>Mental health is something we all have in common. How we choose to care for our personal mental health and the options we have available for care are not things we all have in common. The cultural stigma, access to care, and availability of mental health resources create gaps in the system and they are some of the many reasons why Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month is so important. We must talk about these gaps, address them, and create a more equitable society to ensure everyone can care for their mental well-being, regardless of their racial identity.&nbsp;</p> <p class="text-align-center"><a href="https://www.nami.org/getattachment/Get-Involved/Raise-Awareness/Awareness-Events/National-Minority-Mental-Health-Awareness-Month/Posters,-Social-Media,-Stories-and-Resources/NAMI-Multicultural-Infographic.pdf"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/pyPq6ii9anae29IWenmxgMF41JuBwkSjaak9INLtGu_Cbc-DkpGhWChG7gy4VRcHZoEp-hJFyFbZ4t-yuCw2B2_EmfLAyZi9EB9TwCjAy90idlC6gCTUrMvy8ahLDmVdeg5qbLo" /></a></p> <p>Bebe was a phenomenal writer, speaker, teacher, and published author of plays, novels, articles, and children’s books. She was dedicated to mental health awareness and was a founding member of NAMI-Inglewood (now NAMI Urban Los Angeles). She was an advocate for minority mental health and openly spoke about the stigma minorities face when confronted with the decision to seek treatment for a mental health condition. She spoke of the unique barriers in minority communities and bravely addressed the fact that racism is trauma. As many are currently joining forces to declare racism a public health crisis, I wonder what role Bebe would play in seeing it become a national declaration.&nbsp;</p> <p>I’d like to think that Bebe would advocate for the <a href="https://pressley.house.gov/sites/pressley.house.gov/files/Anti-Racism%20in%20Public%20Health%20Act%20bill%20text.pdf">Anti-Racism in Public Health Act</a>, reintroduced in 2021 to create a National Center on Antiracism and Health at the CDC, create a law enforcement violence prevention program, and nationally declare racism as a public health crisis. If passed, funding would be available for research and data collection on the impact of racism on physical and mental health as well as anti-racist public health interventions.&nbsp;</p> <p>Bebe is remembered as a devoted advocate for minority mental health.&nbsp;</p> <p>“We need a national campaign to destigmatize mental illness, especially one targeted toward African Americans,” she said,“It is not shameful to have a mental illness. Get treatment. Recovery is possible.” She used her platform as a writer and her work with NAMI to spread messages of hope, resilience, and breaking the stigma within minority communities.&nbsp;</p> <p>Bebe’s legacy and commitment to minority mental health lives on in her published works. “72 Hour Hold” was a revolutionary novel that openly spoke about mental health struggles within the black community. While fiction, the story was based on her personal experiences with mental health conditions within her own family. “Sometimes My Mommy Gets Angry” is a children’s book that shows how community care is utilized to help a young girl cope when her mother, who has bipolar disorder, is having difficult days.&nbsp;</p> <p>According to Mental Health America, “Community care refers to ways in which communities of color have provided support to each other. This can include things such as mutual aid, peer support, and healing circles.” In the book, the young girl turns to her grandmother and friends for support. In Bebe’s dedication she states, “I dedicate this book to all children whose mommies struggle with mental illness, addiction, or both and pray that the village will support them.” An advocate and storyteller, Bebe used her talents to make a lasting impact on the mental health community.</p> <p>I personally admire Bebe’s sense of purpose and how she was able to motivate others to be better while also acknowledging that journey for herself. “As I grow older, part of my emotional survival plan must be to actively seek inspiration instead of passively waiting for it to find me.” Her words resonate with my own journey for improving my mental well-being.&nbsp;</p> <p>On this journey, I have been seeking my identifying traits that describe the mixed woman I am today. Born a minority in my community, I still identify with the word within the appropriate context. Being mixed, I am a minority. While Census data shows a shift in the once “minority” group becoming the “majority” in our lifetime, I don’t seem to fit within their guidelines of non-white vs. white. My Blackness, my Whiteness, my Native American ancestry all make up who I am.&nbsp;</p> <p>As far back as I can remember, I’ve been labeled, misidentified, forced into boxes, and told who I am by other people. “Your dad is Black so that makes you Black.” “Black on the outside, White on the inside – you’re an Oreo.” “Are you sure you’re not adopted?” “You’re Puerto Rican, right?” A wise man once told me that it’s not about what they call you, what matters is who you answer to.&nbsp;</p> <p>As a mixed woman I have struggled with the labels that place my identity against itself. I am not BIPOC, nor am I a person of the global majority. I am who Bebe was fighting for - a minority. I’m proud to honor and celebrate her month this July with a community that continues what she has fought for – bringing awareness to minority mental health.&nbsp;</p> <p>No matter how you identify, this month is for all of us to learn about each other’s unique mental health journeys. I encourage you to seek inspiration this month in the differences we have in approaching mental health care. For additional resources and information on Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, visit <a href="https://www.mhanational.org/BIPOC-mental-health-month">https://www.mhanational.org/BIPOC-mental-health-month</a> or the additional source links below.</p> <p><strong>Sources:</strong></p> <p><a href="https://paintedbrain.org/mental-health/bebe-moore-campbell-the-importance-of-her-legacy-in-2020/">https://paintedbrain.org/mental-health/bebe-moore-campbell-the-importance-of-her-legacy-in-2020/</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.statnews.com/2020/07/24/dont-erase-bebe-moore-campbells-name-from-national-minority-mental-health-awareness-month/">https://www.statnews.com/2020/07/24/dont-erase-bebe-moore-campbells-name-from-national-minority-mental-health-awareness-month/</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/09/15/racism-public-health-crisis/">https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/09/15/racism-public-health-crisis/</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="https://pressley.house.gov/media/press-releases/pressley-warren-lee-reintroduce-bold-legislation-confront-structural-racism">https://pressley.house.gov/media/press-releases/pressley-warren-lee-reintroduce-bold-legislation-confront-structural-racism</a>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="https://www.brookings.edu/research/new-census-data-shows-the-nation-is-diversifying-even-faster-than-predicted/">https://www.brookings.edu/research/new-census-data-shows-the-nation-is-diversifying-even-faster-than-predicted/</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <table align="left" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1"> <tbody> <tr> <td><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="a4e6c4f8-9da1-4417-b958-ba8703cc14b8" height="206" src="/sites/default/files/jackie%20D%20PHOTO.JPG" width="150" /></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p style="line-height:1.295; margin-bottom:11px"><span style="font-size:11pt; font-variant:normal; white-space:pre-wrap"><span style="font-family:Arial"><span style="color:#000000"><span style="font-weight:400"><span style="font-style:italic"><span style="text-decoration:none">Jacquilyn is a mission-driven individual with 15 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. She became the first DEI &amp; Engagement Coordinator at Mental Health Connecticut in 2021 though her journey into JEDI work has been a lifelong one. She has a passion for learning American history, practicing cultural humility, and is committed to being an antiracist. Jacquilyn lives in Portland, CT with her partner of 12 years. To connect with Jacquilyn on LinkedIn, visit: </span></span></span></span></span></span><a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/jacquilyn-davis-4007471a" style="text-decoration:none"><span style="font-size:11pt; font-variant:normal; white-space:pre-wrap"><span style="font-family:Arial"><span style="color:#1155cc"><span style="font-weight:400"><span style="font-style:italic"><span style="text-decoration:underline"><span style="-webkit-text-decoration-skip:none"><span style="text-decoration-skip-ink:none">https://www.linkedin.com/in/jacquilyn-davis-4007471a</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></a><span style="font-size:11pt; font-variant:normal; white-space:pre-wrap"><span style="font-family:Arial"><span style="color:#000000"><span style="font-weight:400"><span style="font-style:italic"><span style="text-decoration:none">.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bipoc-mental-health" hreflang="en">BIPOC mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19669&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="1vGzNjrUzwDN87Qz_fdpj7mJAYTmSh_iv192fPGwSrk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 29 Jul 2021 13:29:03 +0000 JCheang 19669 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/celebrating-bebe-moore-campbell#comments Empowering Yourself and Your Community of Color https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/empowering-yourself-and-your-community-color <span>Empowering Yourself and Your Community of Color</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/Free%20Stock%20Image%20From%20Unsplash.jpg" alt="Signs hung on a fence that read &quot;Don&#039;t Give Up,&quot; &quot;You Are Not Alone,&quot; and &quot;You Matter&quot;" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Wed, 07/28/2021 - 13:25</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 28, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Melanie Zhou</em></p> <p>Growing up, I’d often view my mental health as a burden to others. I felt shame when reaching out for help and when I did reach out for help, I was often dismissed by family and community members for being “weak” or “sensitive.” As a child of immigrants, how could I focus on my mental health when my family was struggling to survive in hostile environments where minority experiences are invalidated and the world expects us to fail?&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>To say the least, it feels overwhelming to make well-being a priority when coming from a community of color entrenched in deep stigma. The intergenerational traumas experienced by people of color have shaped rigid perceptions about mental health as a “personal responsibility” and about how it should be resolved. For example, Asian Americans deeply link personal success with familial success and <a href="https://adaa.org/find-help/by-demographics/asian-pacific-islanders">underreport mental health conditions</a> as compared to their white counterparts to “save face.” <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4279858/">One study</a> showed that 63% of Black people believe that a mental health condition is a sign of personal weakness. As a person of color, sometimes both the source of mental troubles and the barrier to getting help come from within a person’s own home.&nbsp;</p> <p>Although it may take a long time to recondition one’s cultural perspective of mental health, any person of color should be reminded that prioritizing their mental health is worthwhile. It is not shameful, it is not weak— it is courageous to take the first steps in preventing cycles of intergenerational trauma that further isolate you and members of your community.&nbsp;</p> <p>Here are some suggestions for how to keep upright in environments that make mental wellness a challenge:&nbsp;</p> <ol> <li aria-level="1"><strong>Get involved in activism</strong><br /> Oftentimes, mental health issues in a community of color are related to institutional discrimination, stereotypes, and racial stigma. Promoting social equity promotes health more broadly. Getting involved in activism can often provide people of color a sense of agency. There is a sense of healing that comes from positively impacting yourself and your community. If your community is less occupied with feelings of inequity, you can begin addressing the mental health stigmas within your community and open the dialogue about mental health.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1"><strong>Reach out to other POC outside your immediate community that you trust to share your story</strong><br /> Sometimes, the people closest to you are not the people who are the most supportive of your story. Connecting with other POC outside your immediate communities may help validate many of the emotions and experiences you were taught to suppress. Other POC will often understand certain themes of your story and provide enough separation from the stigma in your community to offer support. For example, when I started university at a predominantly white institution, I found mental health support with other immigrant children who often did not come from the same culture as me. In general, it is important to find those who will give you space to exist without judgment. Having someone listen to your story without being dismissive can do wonders for your mental health.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1"><strong>Develop a sense of pride in your heritage and use that to approach conversations about mental health in your community&nbsp;</strong><br /> Older generations of color have most likely experienced instances of severe discriminatory treatment that have affected their health and their view of mental health. Asking older generations how they dealt with those feelings and how they envision people of color moving forward demonstrates respect for their lived experience. By initiating conversations about mental health from this common ground of respect, you can instill a sense of hope for tomorrow that will make members of your community more willing to change their perspective of mental health. Lack of mental health education often underpins the opinions of older persons of color. Engaging in a dialogue that acknowledges their past experiences and coping mechanisms while advocating for yours will create a safer space to move your community forward.&nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1"><strong>When seeking professional help, make sure you ask the right questions so that your provider is culturally competent and supportive of your experiences</strong><br /> Reaching out for help is extremely difficult. When you encounter a therapist that does not understand your struggles, generalizes them, or offers advice that defies cultural traditions that seem strange to them but are normal to you, mental health can feel like a meaningless journey. Communicating your needs as a person of color seeking help is extremely important when finding the right mental health professional. Here are a few questions that should help in connecting with a meaningful provider that can empathize with your racial and ethnic background:&nbsp; <ul> <li aria-level="1">How many patients have you treated from my background?</li> <li>Do you have any specialized training in treating individuals of my racial and ethnic identity?</li> <li>How do you think aspects of cultural identity may affect treatment and communication options with patients?</li> </ul> </li> </ol> <p>Your health matters. It is important. You are not alone on your journey. If you are struggling, there are <a href="https://www.massgeneral.org/psychiatry/guide-to-mental-health-resources/for-bipoc-mental-health#localresources">organizations</a> and <a href="https://www.diveinwell.com/">online wellness spaces</a> created by other people of color who will be there to support you.&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <table align="left" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1" style="width: 200px;"> <tbody> <tr> <td class="text-align-center"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="64aa8332-b27e-44d8-bff5-b3f679b19373" height="195" src="/sites/default/files/Melanie%20Headshot.jpg" width="130" /></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p><em>Melanie Zhou is a rising sophomore at Stanford University. Seeing a counselor 10 years after a traumatic childhood experience helped her recognize the need to destigmatize the mental health conversation. In the next few years, she hopes to see her nonprofit, <a href="https://www.oasismentalhealth.org/mission">Oasis</a>, expand to schools across Colorado while partnering with mental health programs that are proven to help students. She serves as the Youth Commissioner on the Governor’s Commission on Community Service of Colorado.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bipoc-mental-health" hreflang="en">BIPOC mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19667&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="Mijb5IgCnOWb4pwUzuwABzEilrKaRTKBSD23jS9CX2A"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Wed, 28 Jul 2021 17:25:59 +0000 JCheang 19667 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/empowering-yourself-and-your-community-color#comments Mental Health and Hip-Hop: An Undeniable Super Team for Healing & Wellness https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/mental-health-and-hip-hop-undeniable-super-team-healing-wellness <span>Mental Health and Hip-Hop: An Undeniable Super Team for Healing &amp; Wellness</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/hip-hop-graffiti-wall-urban-art-39989949.jpg" alt="The words &quot;hip-hop&quot; written in graffiti on a wall." typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Tue, 07/27/2021 - 10:58</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 27, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Dr. Randolph D. Sconiers, DSW, LCSW, Owner of Mental-Hop&nbsp;</em></p> <p>Many people will read the title of this article and never consider the idea that mental health could be connected to the influential culture of hip-hop, creating an engaging approach to helping people impacted by mental health issues. Saying that the combination of mental health and hip-hop can be utilized in helping people really doesn’t do this unlikely combination justice because when paired together, they can accomplish so much more. The moment the hip-hop supergroup Dead Prez stated, “it’s bigger than hip-hop” on their single “Hip-Hop” released in 2000, it was clear that the culture I was introduced to at the age of eight was so much more than just music.</p> <p>My introduction to hip-hop started when my parents bought me my first boom box at the age of eight. I felt like the luckiest kid on my block because I finally had a way to listen to the music I loved so much. Hip-hop helped raise me. I loved that boom box so much, I put it on my bed and listened to DJ Red Alert, Mr. Magic/Marley Marl while falling asleep almost every night. The power of hip-hop and its impact on my mental health, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors was made very clear to me as a kid. As I listened to the music, I developed a sense of self, an understanding for language, and the ability to connect with others. Although I didn’t know what they were called back then, those pillars of hip-hop became a way of life for me. The legendary hip-hop MC, KRS-ONE proclaimed, “rap is something you do, hip-hop is something you live” and I have been living hip-hop ever since.</p> <p>Hip-hop culture embodies five pillars that have made it the most influential movement of today. The pillars also make the connection between mental health and hip-hop much easier to understand. Hip-hop culture is founded on the MC (Mic Controller), the DJ, breakdancing, graffiti, and knowledge. These pillars are the foundational aspects of a culture that originated in the Bronx, New York in the 1970s. The hip-hop education scholar Dr. Christopher Emdin stated, “hip-hop was born out of the oppression” in the 1970s as a means for people to make sense of their environment but also provide the necessary healing spaces of an entire community. Many believe that the historical roots of hip-hop go back even further than its beginnings in the Bronx, and was birthed by the music, sounds, movements, and cultural/healing ceremonies in Africa.&nbsp;</p> <p>That’s right, from Africa to the Bronx, NY to the world, hip-hop is the number one genre of music on a global level. In 2018, Nielsen reported that for the first time in history, hip-hop surpassed rock to become the most popular genre of music. So it only makes sense that the number one genre of music and iconic culture called hip-hop teams up with the vital aspect of our overall functioning called mental health. Here’s where things get magical. The marriage between mental health and hip-hop, which I call Mental-Hop is one that only an Oscar award-winning writer could put together. Honestly, it’s so much more. I truly believe the pairing of mental health and hip-hop is divine and cosmic, which leads to its undeniable superpower to help people heal.</p> <p>I know, it sounds a little over-the-top but as I break down how the five pillars are aligned with mental health and wellness, things become strikingly clear. There’s nothing more original and innovative than hip-hop. It’s founded on authenticity, engagement, collaboration, and empowerment. As we seek to end the stigma and shame around mental health treatment, these aspects of hip-hop support and enhance our ability to demystify various aspects of mental health services and resources. Hip-hop artist Meek Mill recently stated, “we gotta find a way to make therapy cool for the black community.” His Instagram quote went on to receive numerous likes and reposts of support, which echoed the need to make one of the most recognizable aspects of mental health healing something engaging for a population of people that are not always afforded access to quality as well as culturally competent and sensitive mental health and wellness services. This is where hip-hop can take center stage. The pillars of hip-hop culture provide a practical and simplistic connection to mental health that can be easily understood but more importantly, impactful in helping people begin to take the lead in their healing and wellness journey. Let’s start the show, shall we?</p> <p><strong>The mental health &amp; hip-hop connection: the power is in the pillars</strong></p> <p><strong>Pillar #1: “The MC”</strong></p> <p>In hip-hop culture, the MC is the most recognizable aspect of hip-hop. The MC or the Mic Controller is the artist, creative, storyteller, rapper, poet, and writer that so eloquently expresses thoughts through words. Not only are the words important but the voice of the MC takes listeners on a sonic ride of thoughts, feelings, and ideas. An MC can dig deep into the depths of their souls and release feelings around a diverse group of topics--their childhood memories, relationships, partying, life’s journeys, and more. It gets even more compelling when you hear MCs speak of chronic community violence, trauma, social injustice, or battling depression. Hip-hop has not only been a way of those often unheard to have a voice, it has become a way for those experiencing some of the harshest realities in our society to cope, heal, and try to make sense of it all. Mental health is essentially the same in the way that treating those impacted by mental illness provides an opportunity to help people cope, heal, and make sense of it all to function at their optimal level. We can utilize the same skills and abilities that our favorite MCs use so effectively to empower those who are struggling with mental health conditions. Those struggling also deserve a voice that is heard, appreciated, and supported. Just like those of your favorite MCs. We can encourage people to share their stories through words in a marble notebook like MCs often use or by using their voices in therapy sessions, group counseling spaces, or just hanging out with friends. The MC just gets it out. There is power in releasing the feelings and thoughts we have inside. There is a heaviness that is lifted when a person shares their pain, perspective, and success. Not only is it liberating for the MC or person expressing those feelings, but it’s also empowering and inspiring for the listener. We need more MCs in mental health. Let’s call them Mental Health Creatives (MCs), people who are empowered to share, speak, and heal with the same courage as an MC who must take the stage and rock the mic. It’s scary of course but it’s so liberating and healing at the same time. Hip-hop culture is about acceptance and connection. Mental health should be the same. When paired together, nothing can stop an MC, Mic Controller or Mental Health Creative, from basking in the spotlight.</p> <p><strong>Pillar #2: “The DJ”</strong></p> <p>The music that sets the mood, creates the vibe, and activates the energy is all engineered by the DJ. The DJ stands for Disc Jockey but in hip-hop we refer to this person as the crowd controller. The DJ has a great responsibility in hip-hop culture. Some may say the DJ is the most important pillar in hip-hop culture because of their power to play the music and sounds that touch our ears. Hip-hop has always been mood music. The DJ can select certain songs to totally impact the mood of a room or even an entire arena. If a DJ wants the crowd to get more active, they may throw on “Where My Dogs At?” by the late, great DMX. If we are in a space of reflecting on relationships with our mothers, a DJ wouldn’t hesitate to play “Dear Mama” by the iconic Tupac Shakur. If we are talking resilience and going from surviving to thriving, then “Juicy” from The Notorious BIG is all we need. The bottom line is the DJ can move us into different emotional states with ease, which is part of the reason music is often utilized as a coping tool for those experiencing any type of mental or emotional distress. People recognize the power and ability that hip-hop has to impact their mood in a positive way and essentially become their personal DJs. Whether in the car, a bedroom, school, or at the office. People are putting on their favorite songs and taking their pain away. Nothing supports this more than the invention of the playlist. The playlist allows someone to access a group of songs categorized by mood, genre, emotional state, location, or whatever title they decide to give it. There’s freedom and power in choice. The DJ’s playlist is very personal and is kind of like a personal music coping list for someone to utilize when going through a difficult time. We may choose songs for relatability, which is why we may throw on the angriest hip-hop song when we’re feeling angry. Maybe listening to that sad hip-hop song helps us to see that we are not alone when it comes to grieving or depression. It can be that motivational and inspiring hip-hop song that lifts our moods and restores hope for us on our healing journey. Music is powerful and having the ability to choose songs that can help us get through difficult times is empowering. Hip-hop DJs are a great example of how mental health can utilize the power of music. Take a day and create your personal mood-elevating playlist. Remember there’s power in choice. It’s your turn to change the mood and create the vibe.</p> <p><strong>Pillar #3: “Breakdancing”</strong></p> <p>The pillar known as breakdancing is an art form like nothing anyone has ever seen. Also known as breaking, this style of dance is where many of today’s viral Instagram and TikTok posts originated. Breaking encompasses a level of technical ability, rhythm, athleticism, and style. It is movement and the physical aspect of hip-hop culture that birthed so many dance crazes, movements, and even global competitions. The authenticity and rawness of breaking has been captured in movies throughout history, whether you’re talking about the legendary hip-hop films, “Breakin’” or “Beat Street,” both released in 1984. Breakdancing has a historical significance in our society because it birthed many of the dance competitions we see on TV and in movies today. Breaking also makes for a great connection to mental health and wellness. That is the idea of physical movement and its positive impact on our mental health. According to an article by the American Psychological Association (2011, APA), physical activity positively impacts mood, can alleviate chronic depression, and generally makes us feel good. I am in no way suggesting that someone with serious mental illness start spinning on their head or doing 360-degree windmill spins on the ground, but there is something to the idea of combining movement and a healthy wellness regimen. The idea of movement and music together make for a sound combination of tools to utilize for anyone who is treating a mental illness or anyone who is focused on their mental health. Breaking is intense but it has always been about feeling good. It’s only right that we find more spaces to get people moving again, just like the breakers did in the 1970s to dance away their pain, to party, and to feel good.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Pillar #4: “Graffiti”</strong></p> <p>That’s right, the spray-painted walls, buildings, and trains were often criticized and have been recognized as a meaningful art form. Graffiti has always been just that for us hip-hop heads. It was another form of expression, communication, and exploration of identity. Graffiti artists are the geniuses that birthed paintings, logos, CD covers, and print illustrations. Utilizing spray paint, graffiti artists would tag (spray paint) their names, images, and work on buildings throughout the Bronx, NY and beyond in the 1970s. Hip-hop artist Fat Joe, who hails from the Bronx, NY, has spoken numerous times about the impact graffiti has had on his life. In 2012, the legendary Bronx rapper stopped at the home of another famous hip-hop artist, Lil Wayne, to show off his graffiti skills. Both artists celebrated the work by showing it to the public on social media. Graffiti is the epitome of self-expression and creativity, which are both essential aspects of healing and wellness. Sigmund Freud, who some have referred to as the father of psychology, stated, “Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways.” Graffiti was utilized by many to express emotions in healthy ways. It was done not only to avoid uglier days but to highlight the beauty that exists in all of us. Although criticized and outlawed in the past, graffiti has gained global acceptance as a highly recognizable art form. Many therapists, practitioners, and mental health advocates encourage those they serve to explore their creative outlets. Whether it’s painting or coloring that a person chooses to participate in for creative stimulation, that same release is synonymous with the feeling graffiti artists of the past experienced in those artistic spaces of the 70s. Mental health needs more art and art needs mental health. Both create the spaces for people to self-express, grow, and heal.</p> <p><strong>Pillar #5: “Knowledge”</strong></p> <p>The Hip-Hop culture pillar of knowledge is so important in making the connection between hip-hop and mental health. When I created the Mental-Hop Program in 2017, it was really born out of this idea to utilize the influential power of hip-hop to engage, educate, and empower young people around the importance of mental health. It’s that knowledge or information, which allows for a greater understanding of mental health and wellness. By educating people about the historical significance of hip-hop culture and its origins, we can bring people closer to a greater understanding of mental health and its importance for our daily functioning. The pillar of knowledge allows us to take hip-hop culture into spaces of academia, therapy, politics, community service, and more. All with the goal of helping people feel better, improving their experiences, restoring families, and helping communities heal. Hip-hop culture was born in the streets of the Bronx, NY but it was too powerful to stay in one place. Its global influence makes it an essential resource for educating people about the importance of mental health, healing, and wellness. Hip-hop knowledge is engaging, which decreases stigma and shame because it’s founded on connecting. It’s organically inviting due to authenticity and practicality. You don’t need much to live in this culture called hip-hop. All that’s asked is that you respect it and stay true to it. It sounds like the same request we have for mental health--respect the importance of it and stay true to creating more spaces for people to cope, heal, and grow when addressing their mental health.&nbsp;</p> <p>Mental health and hip-hop culture are the super-friends we need for today. When they team up, their reach is undeniable. Whether it’s reaching marginalized groups whose voices around mental health issues are seldom heard or highly stigmatized groups like Black and Brown men who may suffer from a lack of emotionally safe spaces to express their feelings, hip-hop culture provides an engaging opportunity to begin to heal. Hip-hop culture is the inviting door of a safe house called mental health.</p> <hr /> <table align="left" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1" style="width: 200px;"> <tbody> <tr> <td class="text-align-center"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5770f4b6-e55f-408e-a28e-070d4609c07b" height="209" src="/sites/default/files/Dr.%20Sconiers%20headshot.jpg" width="175" /></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p>Dr. Randolph D. Sconiers, DSW, LCSW (Dr. S) is a Doctor of Social Work and a NJ Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Dr. Sconiers is a mental health therapist in private practice with over 20 years of experience in mental health therapy, mental health education, and advocacy. As a mental health therapist, Dr. Sconiers has been featured in The Huffington Post, been recognized by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and has appeared numerous times on NYC’s Hot97/Fox5’s Street Soldiers Show with Lisa Evers for his work in the areas of mental health and hip-hop culture! Dr. Sconiers is the Owner and Creator of Mental-Hop, which focuses on mental health education through hip-hop culture. Mental-Hop partners with various organizations including New Jersey’s Juvenile Justice Commission and Simon Youth Academy of New Jersey to educate young people through his Mental-Hop Symposiums. Dr. Sconiers is also an Adjunct Professor for the Graduate School of Social Work at Kean University in Union, New Jersey.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/mental-wellness" hreflang="en">mental wellness</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bipoc-mental-health" hreflang="en">BIPOC mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19666&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="9UyYNWSFF_PsFKTrn5dtC8r37KPbyOWIhiRv2xAN1Vo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Tue, 27 Jul 2021 14:58:16 +0000 JCheang 19666 at https://staging.mhanational.org Why You Should Care About #FreeBritney https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/why-you-should-care-about-freebritney <span>Why You Should Care About #FreeBritney</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/freebritney%20blog.png" alt="Picture of Britney Spears on a Pink Background" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Wed, 07/14/2021 - 10:07</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 14, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Jessica Kennedy, Chief of Staff at Mental Health America</em></p> <p>Britney Spears’ case returns to court today and supporters of the #FreeBritney movement will rally in D.C. at the Lincoln Memorial to pledge their support for her and her fight against conservatorship.</p> <p>Britney Spears has asked courts to end a conservatorship that has prevented the singer-songwriter from managing her own finances, her own business, and her own life.</p> <p>Her public mental health struggles in the 2000s, her subsequent treatment, and the assignment of her father as conservator have all been well-documented in the press. Social media fans, petition creators, and others launched the #FreeBritney movement to raise awareness about Britney’s conservatorship.&nbsp;</p> <p>The movement exploded earlier this year when a heartbreaking Hulu documentary from the New York Times Presents, <em>Framing Britney Spears</em>, laid everything out on the table.</p> <p>But #FreeBritney is also about something more than legal efforts to free someone from a conservatorship. It’s about a societal stigma -- our fundamental inability to believe that people with mental health challenges are intelligent, capable people who can make good decisions.&nbsp;</p> <p>It’s a stigma faced by people like Britney--people like me.&nbsp;</p> <p>I’m not a lawyer, so I can’t pretend to know the right legal arguments for either side. But Britney’s story, and her journey, are so sadly similar to what I’ve experienced, and many people with mental health and substance use conditions experience.</p> <p>After a crisis experience, we may find ourselves in rehab programs, partial hospitalization programs, or inpatient facilities. A lot of the time, that’s because there weren’t enough resources to get us help before the crisis stage.</p> <p>The thing is, as Britney has experienced, once you’re part of this system, it can be hard to get out. People just stop treating you as someone who is able to make their own decisions.</p> <p>Do you want to check out of the facility? You have to wait until you’re cleared by someone else, even if you checked in yourself.&nbsp;</p> <p>Do you want to stop taking a certain medication or stop seeing a certain therapist? You’re not well; those are choices for someone else to make.</p> <p>Do you make bad choices with money? Even just a few times? Now we need to put you into a conservatorship or assign you a representative payee (for social security management) to help you “make good choices.” You will need to justify every single decision.&nbsp;</p> <p>There are times when someone does need a conservator or a representative payee. Some MHA affiliates run representative payee programs. MHA’s <a href="https://mhanational.org/issues/position-statement-36-self-determination-initiatives">position statement</a> on self-determination acknowledges that while there are some times when appointing a guardian, conservator, or representative is necessary, the individual with the mental health condition MUST have a voice. &nbsp; It’s critically important that guardianship and conservatorship laws limit the discretion of guardians and require shared decision-making in justifying any action that affects the person with a mental health condition.</p> <p>It doesn’t seem like Britney has been involved in a whole lot of shared-decision making.</p> <p>Treat Britney with respect.&nbsp;</p> <p>Read her statement.&nbsp;</p> <p>Listen to her words.</p> <p>I am. Join me.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/mental-health-policy" hreflang="en">mental health policy</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19461&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="RnTnRkZ-aBwansVlehnYLo98BjLY_OKODlsGM7EFi2c"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Wed, 14 Jul 2021 14:07:01 +0000 JCheang 19461 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/why-you-should-care-about-freebritney#comments As AAPIs, We Need Therapists Who Look Like Us https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/aapis-we-need-therapists-who-look-us <span>As AAPIs, We Need Therapists Who Look Like Us</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/pexels-ketut-subiyanto-4474047.jpg" alt="Woman with white turtleneck smiling and looking at computer screen while writing on a pad." typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 07/08/2021 - 11:00</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 08, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By&nbsp;Dr. Elissa S. Lee, Researcher,&nbsp;Occupational Therapist, Writer, and Consultant and Lillian Man, MSW/MPH Candidate at UC Berkeley</em></p> <p>We’re tired of the statistics, so let’s just get it out there:</p> <p><strong>AAPIs are the least of any race to seek mental health help, although we need it</strong></p> <p>AAPI individuals are the least likely of any racial group to seek help (three times less likely than white individuals), with a 17.3% overall lifetime incidence of psychiatric disorders, and yet only 8.6% seek mental health help.[1]</p> <p>Thao Duong, 29, has worked in mental health most of her adult life, first at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and then at Asian Women’s Shelter in San Francisco.</p> <p>“Often it feels like because so few of us seek help, people assume that AAPI people just don’t need mental health services because we don’t reach out,” she said, “These statistics show false stories. Not only that, a lot of our research lumps us all together as if we’re one category.”</p> <p>The pandemic and compounding crises have had a colossal impact on our society’s mental health this past year. 43% of AAPI respondents say COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health, according to a KFF survey [2]. Moreover, the rise in the number of reported acts of violence and discrimination towards the AAPI community this past year has further impacted the mental health of our communities. Within the AAPI community, a significant relationship was found between discrimination and depression and anxiety.[3]&nbsp; And while racism toward our community isn’t new, the pandemic and compounding crises have further illuminated the need for mental health care within the AAPI communities.</p> <p>These are statistics that we,&nbsp;Asian Americans and healthcare professionals, have been inundated with, especially in the past year. There are many reasons as to why, but part of the reality is that we don’t have many more statistics to go off of, as one of the issues is the lack of research for the AAPI population, especially research that disaggregates data amongst the AAPI diaspora.[4]</p> <p><strong>Among all the barriers, there is a lack of AAPI providers</strong></p> <p>Five percent of the psychologist workforce identifies as Asian and 1% are multiracial or from other racial groups (which included Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander), as opposed to 86% who identify as white. [5]</p> <p>The demand for AAPI therapists has far surpassed the supply.</p> <p>“I realized that despite my frequent recommendations for Asian Americans to seek mental health care, many would return reporting that a lot of the Asian providers were full at this time,” said Dr. Jenny Wang of <a href="https://www.instagram.com/asiansformentalhealth/">@asiansformentalhealth</a>, “We cannot expect clients to receive care if there are not enough providers to serve them.”</p> <p>Additional barriers to seeking treatment include stigma and shame, lack of financial ability, and the lack of ethnic and linguistic-specific services, among others.[6] Asian American patients who see Asian American providers report higher satisfaction with their care, especially when they are ethnically and linguistically matched.[7]</p> <p>When Duong herself sought therapy before the pandemic, she felt that while her therapist was&nbsp; helpful in many ways, the therapist would make comments that made it obvious her lack of understanding with AAPI and queer issues.</p> <p>“She would say things like, ‘I have experienced this in my AAPI patients and I felt like I was being generalized,” said Duong.</p> <p>Another time, the therapist commented casually, “where you come from in your country” (Duong was born in Fargo, North Dakota&nbsp;and raised in Sacramento, California).</p> <p>“To this day, I still remember how that felt,” said Duong, “I’m really hoping to forget it.”</p> <p>Culturally competent care is also critical to addressing specific mental health needs related to intersectionalities. Rylan Rosario, a queer Black and Guamanian doctoral candidate in counseling psychology, shared the importance of finding a clinician that you can relate to and is culturally humble.</p> <p>“It’s important that they understand your culture and what that means.For example, we tend to be more collectivist but we live in a very individualistic society…so [a clinician] might say, well your family is too enmeshed, and look at that as something that’s not okay and healthy, but the reality is that’s normal for us, that’s how we get through,” Rosario said, “Sometimes if it can be a little toxic, it should be like, can we work through that? But I don’t want to change the dynamics of my family structure, we all help each other.”</p> <p>“When we are talking about mental health, it is impossible to understand a person's mental health without considering the impact of their racial and ethnic identity on how they see their world and their place in it,” said Dr. Wang, “Unfortunately the field of mental health has predominantly been a Eurocentric field up until this point and so serving the Asian American&nbsp; Pacific Islander community can be difficult when providers are not equipped to appreciate the cultural nuances and inter-generational facts that impact Asian Americans in their mental health.”</p> <p><strong>We need providers who understand us to improve AAPI mental health care and to further the overall mental health field</strong></p> <p>Dr. Wang and I (Elissa) are working toward developing an AAPI therapist directory to make it easier for patients to access therapists, as well as a <a href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/scholarship-fund-for-aapi-mh-professional-trainees">scholarship fund</a> to raise up the next generation of AAPI therapists. So far, we have raised $16,000 toward a goal of $30,000.</p> <p>“People of color are much less likely to pursue graduate training or mental health fields due to the heavy costs associated with advanced training,” said Dr. Wang, “We hope that through the scholarship fund we are able to help alleviate some of those costs for future mental health professionals of AAPI descent.”</p> <p>Having more AAPI providers in the mental health field helps to decolonize therapy and moves us toward a better understanding not only of AAPI mental health but of mental health as a whole.</p> <p>Duong was able to find a therapist through Dr. Wang’s website last year at the height of the pandemic.</p> <p>“With the spotlight on hate crimes toward the AAPI community, I was crying a lot and…it was so hard, I didn’t know how not to cry or how not to be anxious leaving my house,” Duong said.</p> <p>She was scrolling through Instagram when she found Dr. Wang’s call for sliding scale AAPI therapists, and was able to reach out to two therapists -- one for her sibling and one for her.</p> <p>“It just felt nice, just for her to be from the same background, just for her to understand,” Duong said.</p> <p class="text-align-center"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="3aa6d747-2f94-4ced-991d-3ea52fd80ef0" src="/sites/default/files/1_26.png" width="600" /><br /> <img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="75d9d646-23e6-410b-ade7-2384909a83cc" src="/sites/default/files/2_27.png" width="600" /><br /> <img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="2a112338-e766-4ce7-b76d-ed58c3061666" src="/sites/default/files/3_25.png" width="600" /><br /> <img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="1b15a3db-b39d-4acc-b2f0-23f94aea1db9" src="/sites/default/files/4_31.png" width="600" /><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="669d44de-232f-41a9-908f-c75f97a0cb2f" src="/sites/default/files/5_14.png" width="600" /><br /> <img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="7af62d1a-5ba3-4694-b08c-81b56b474f4b" height="600" src="/sites/default/files/6_16.png" width="600" /><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="88576202-39d0-4cf5-a7be-93b1ff7c8cf8" src="/sites/default/files/7_12.png" width="600" /><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5772a1e3-58b5-469e-a39a-219807f6e456" src="/sites/default/files/8_8.png" width="600" /><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="54e0244d-0756-474c-a2da-cb88e30d01ce" src="/sites/default/files/9_7.png" width="600" /></p> <p class="text-align-center"><em>Graphic by Trevor San Antonio, who also contributed to this report.</em></p> <p>Please consider donating and sharing our campaign (<a href="https://tinyurl.com/aapimentalhealthfund">https://tinyurl.com/aapimentalhealthfund</a>) and inviting all the AAPI therapists you know to join the directory at <a href="https://asiansformentalhealth.com/">https://asiansformentalhealth.com/</a>.<br /> &nbsp;</p> <hr /> <p><align=”left” alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="4a171aff-0135-4563-bf97-a1352df0ed16" height="113" hspace="”50”" src="/sites/default/files/elissa%20lee.PNG" vspace="”50”" width="112"></align=”left”></p> <table align="left" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1" style="width: 100px;"> <tbody> <tr> <td class="text-align-center"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="e3d4c871-d470-477d-ad94-223979782364" height="113" src="/sites/default/files/elissa%20lee_0.PNG" width="112" /></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p><a href="https://www.instagram.com/elissasays">Dr. Elissa S. Lee</a> (she/her) is a proud daughter of immigrants; she is also a sister, a grandchild, a cousin, a friend. In her attempts to improve health equity and make the world a kinder and braver place, other titles she holds include: health care journalist, chronic care researcher, occupational therapy clinician, nonprofit consultant, dancer, and amateur cook. Lee holds a doctorate from USC and a B.A. from UC Berkeley.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <table align="left" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1" style="width: 100px;"> <tbody> <tr> <td class="text-align-center"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="9d1bbf64-6772-4258-bf5e-40e739dfc039" height="119" src="/sites/default/files/lillian%20man.PNG" width="106" /></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p>Lillian Man (she/her) is an MSW/MPH candidate at UC Berkeley. As a daughter of immigrants, she dedicates her work to improving the lives of vulnerable populations. She has worked at San Francisco Suicide Prevention, Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, and Asian Health Services. Her current research is focused on the pandemic’s economic impact on AAPI populations.</p> <p><br /> &nbsp;</p> <div> <hr size="2" /></div> <p>[1] Discrimination and Mental Health–Related Service Use in a National Study of Asian Americans:<a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2978178/"> https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2978178/</a></p> <p>[2] Asian Immigrant Experiences with Racism, Immigration-Related Fears, and the COVID-19 Pandemic</p> <p>https://www.kff.org/coronavirus-covid-19/issue-brief/asian-immigrant-experiences-with-racism-immigration-related-fears-and-the-covid-19-pandemic/</p> <p>[3] Racial Discrimination and Asian Mental Health: A Meta-Analysis<a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0011000010381791"> https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0011000010381791</a></p> <p>[4] Health research funding lags for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders</p> <p><a href="https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190815142522.htm">https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190815142522.htm</a></p> <p>[5] U.S. Census Bureau. (2015). American Community Survey 1-Year PUMS file. Retrieved from<a href="http://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/data/pums.html"> www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/data/pums.html</a>. "Other" racial/ethnic groups included American Indian/Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and people of two or more races.</p> <p>[6] The Evolution of Community Mental Health Services in Asian American Communities<a href="https://link-springer-com.libproxy1.usc.edu/article/10.1007/s10615-011-0356-z"> https://link-springer-com.libproxy1.usc.edu/article/10.1007/s10615-011-0356-z</a></p> <p>[7] Ibid.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bipoc-mental-health" hreflang="en">BIPOC mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19457&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="ZovtjRcGJSErQH3KXjHPJXFCEY-LZpN58WfZuyJ-dRc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 08 Jul 2021 15:00:04 +0000 JCheang 19457 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/aapis-we-need-therapists-who-look-us#comments Here’s How You Can Address Both Mental Health and Hunger in Your Community https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/heres-how-you-can-address-both-mental-health-and-hunger-your-community <span>Here’s How You Can Address Both Mental Health and Hunger in Your Community</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-07/brittani-burns-pEu_jnyi2c4-unsplash.jpg" alt="Woman and two men in a grocery store" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Tue, 07/06/2021 - 11:22</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 06, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Jillian Hughes, Communications Director at Mental Health America</em></p> <p>The food you put into your body is critical for maintaining good health and well-being, and that includes mental health as well as physical health. A healthy, well-balanced diet including leafy green vegetables, fruits, legumes, fish, whole grains, nuts, avocados, and olive oil supports your brain and can be one way to manage mental health conditions.</p> <p>But healthy food isn’t always accessible for everyone. Social, structural, and systemic inequities contribute to higher rates of hunger and the prevalence of mental health conditions for Black, Latino, and Native American individuals.&nbsp;</p> <p>Community stakeholders, including food banks, food pantries, non-profits, public health, and health care organizations, can work to address this. One Mental Health America (MHA) affiliate, The Association for Mental Health and Wellness (MHAW), is already doing this.</p> <p>Several years ago, MHAW worked with a nutritionist to look at the food their Recovery Center served during shared meals. They wanted to make healthy choices readily available. As soon as they did this, they found people opted for fresh fruits and vegetables, and they also discovered many people were facing a scarcity of these items at home. To confront this problem, they began operating food pantries at three of their service centers in an effort to continue to serve and support the overall health of their communities.</p> <p><strong><u><a href="https://hungerandhealth.feedingamerica.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/FA_HealthEQ_Closer-Look_MHA_D4.pdf">In collaboration with Feeding America</a></u></strong>, MHA identified similar ways you can take action on this in your community:</p> <ul> <li aria-level="1">Convene food/hospitality, education, social service, and other community partners to identify and develop solutions to hunger and health barriers within the community.&nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1">Prioritize increasing access to affordable food, health care, and medication; addressing the social determinants of health; eliminating health disparities; amplifying community voice.&nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1">Build trust through positive interactions and communication with the community and engage in developing strategies to address the unique and complex needs of people facing hunger, eliminating bias, recognizing we are all in this together.&nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1">Design culturally appropriate resources; and make them accessible in local clinics, grocery stores, food banks and pantries, community centers, schools, and places of worship.&nbsp;</li> <li aria-level="1">Advocate for policy, systems, and environmental change approaches that support increased nutritious food access, improved health and well-being for community members in greatest need.</li> </ul> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/mental-wellness" hreflang="en">mental wellness</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19456&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="r0zxIk6HJR2zly0TiSLSduTZIzeb6QxMiKqb8tCL7pE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Tue, 06 Jul 2021 15:22:29 +0000 JCheang 19456 at https://staging.mhanational.org Now Open: Apply to be an MHA Young Mental Health Leader! https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/now-open-apply-be-mha-young-mental-health-leader <span>Now Open: Apply to be an MHA Young Mental Health Leader!</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-06/Untitled%20design%20%281%29.png" alt="8 student leaders" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Wed, 06/30/2021 - 11:15</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">June 28, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><strong>Mental&nbsp;Health&nbsp;America (MHA) is now accepting applications for our<a data-saferedirecturl="https://www.google.com/url?q=https://default.salsalabs.org/T3fcd85fa-ba33-4f69-875d-9e1a391bc69e/ab43bdbc-3cd7-493a-957e-463a9d30c72f&amp;source=gmail&amp;ust=1625152708282000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHAvUVs3wyE4rxZTqk0QDXUd6CrJw" href="https://default.salsalabs.org/T3fcd85fa-ba33-4f69-875d-9e1a391bc69e/ab43bdbc-3cd7-493a-957e-463a9d30c72f" target="_blank">&nbsp;2021-2022&nbsp;Young&nbsp;Mental&nbsp;Health&nbsp;Leaders Council (YMHLC)</a>!</strong></p> <p>YMHLC identifies&nbsp;young&nbsp;adults (18-25) who have created programs and initiatives that fill gaps in&nbsp;mental&nbsp;health&nbsp;resources in their communities. From policy to apps and peer support to sports, MHA’s&nbsp;young&nbsp;adult leaders are making a difference to meet the needs of their peers. Selected applicants participate in a six-month cohort to connect and share ideas with other leaders from across the US.</p> <p>In addition to attending monthly 90-minute meetings over the six-month term, YMHLC members will:</p> <ul> <li>Receive one-on-one mentoring for their programmatic and professional growth</li> <li>Gain leadership opportunities at MHA and with MHA partners</li> <li>Highlight their work and ideas via MHA’s social media and&nbsp;young&nbsp;adult&nbsp;mental&nbsp;health&nbsp;resources</li> <li>Present at MHA local and national events and with MHA partners</li> <li>Join a network of&nbsp;young&nbsp;mental&nbsp;health&nbsp;leaders and MHA affiliates</li> <li>Receive a $1,000 stipend</li> </ul> <p>In line with MHA’s founding and history of consumer leadership, the&nbsp;Young&nbsp;Mental&nbsp;Health&nbsp;Leaders Council centers lived experience as essential to meeting the&nbsp;mental&nbsp;health&nbsp;needs of youth and&nbsp;young&nbsp;adults today.&nbsp;</p> <p>Youth and&nbsp;young&nbsp;adult&nbsp;mental&nbsp;health&nbsp;is worsening, and&nbsp;young&nbsp;people are living in vastly different circumstances than we have ever seen before. To improve the well-being of&nbsp;young&nbsp;people, YMHLC amplifies and grows the work of&nbsp;young&nbsp;leaders who best understand the challenges and opportunities to support their peers.</p> <p><a class="btn btn-primary" href="https://mhanational.org/get-involved/2021-young-mental-health-leaders-council-application">Share and Apply Today</a></p> <p><strong>Applications are due Friday, August 20, 2021.</strong></p> <p>Questions? Email Kelly Davis, MHA’s Associate Vice President of Peer and Youth Advocacy, at&nbsp;<a data-saferedirecturl="https://www.google.com/url?q=https://default.salsalabs.org/T359cdfe9-91e4-4090-9656-abe0a0f41277/ab43bdbc-3cd7-493a-957e-463a9d30c72f&amp;source=gmail&amp;ust=1625152708282000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGkKy3woyW62od8yaHyvAAU-yFfDQ" href="https://default.salsalabs.org/T359cdfe9-91e4-4090-9656-abe0a0f41277/ab43bdbc-3cd7-493a-957e-463a9d30c72f" target="_blank">kdavis@mhanational.org</a>.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/youth-mental-health" hreflang="en">youth mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19454&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="H-yvcn5l_nbZzv_8Yzw--2_j9U8YrJgYKxNDr8juEpY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Wed, 30 Jun 2021 15:15:50 +0000 JCheang 19454 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/now-open-apply-be-mha-young-mental-health-leader#comments LGBTQ Peers Deserve to Feel Pride Too https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/lgbtq-peers-deserve-feel-pride-too <span>LGBTQ Peers Deserve to Feel Pride Too</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-06/pexels-ron%C3%AA-ferreira-2577951.jpg" alt="Woman with a flower crown and rainbow sparkle makeup looking at the camera with a rainbow flag wrapped around her." typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 06/07/2021 - 10:44</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">June 07, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p style="margin-top:16px; margin-bottom:16px"><em>By Kat McIntosh, Manager of Global Peer Support at Mental Health America</em></p> <p>Everyone deserves to feel pride in their mental health. Research shows that sharing the story of your mental illness can be empowering and may enhance a person’s self-esteem<a href="#_ftn1" name="_ftnref1" title="">[1]</a>.</p> <p>In the 1970s, a mental illness diagnosis meant you were considered ill for the rest of your life and not given much hope. This hopelessness could have made it difficult for those living with mental health conditions to feel pride in their mental health.</p> <p>The consumer movement, which gave rise to peer support, called for inclusion<a href="#_ftn2" name="_ftnref2" title="">[2]</a>. It advocated for the mantra “nothing for us, without us.” We see evidence of this movement in the principles of peer support--it is voluntary and has equally-shared power.</p> <p>A peer is someone who shares your lived experience. This lived experience can be having a mental health condition, but it can also include other characteristics such as sharing a specific mental health diagnosis, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, language, or disability. Being a peer can also be a situational experience, such as being a parent or experiencing a life-altering event such as a natural disaster.</p> <p>One principle of peer support is equally-shared power, but equality may not be the experience of LGBTQ peers. A recent report by the Trevor Project found that 75% of LGBTQ youth had experienced discrimination in their lifetime<a href="#_ftn3" name="_ftnref3" title="">[3]</a>. We need to ensure that LGBTQ peers feel included. Inclusion can help promote pride.</p> <p>Mental Health America (MHA)’s screening data shows that 95% of LGBTQ youth ages 11-17 scored moderate to severe for depression<a href="#_ftn4" name="_ftnref4" title="">[4]</a>. Not only are LGBTQ folks experiencing challenges with their mental health, but they are also simultaneously experiencing discrimination. Ending this discrimination is vital since personal, family, and social acceptance of sexual orientation and gender identity can affect the mental health and personal safety of LGBTQ individuals<a href="#_ftn5" name="_ftnref5" title="">[5]</a>.</p> <p>It is crucial to help LGBTQ peers to feel pride in their mental health. To do this, we must advocate for acceptance and inclusion. The absence of this inclusion can cause negative impacts on mental health. Reports indicate that LGBTQ persons experience stigma, discrimination, and denial of both civil and human rights5. Trevor Project’s recent survey also showed that 94% of LGBTQ youth reported that recent politics affected their mental health.</p> <p>Inclusion happens in everyday events like using chosen names and pronouns. When we use the chosen name of LGBTQ youth, it can help reduce suicidal ideation and depression<a href="#_ftn6" name="_ftnref6" title="">[6]</a>. Additionally, when pronouns are respected, it can minimize suicide risk by 50%.</p> <p>Inclusion also means creating safety for LGBTQ folks to share their experiences without facing discrimination. In a survey of LGBTQ people, over 50% reported that they had experienced cases of providers denying care, using harsh language, or blaming the patient’s sexual orientation or gender identity for causing an illness. Fear of discrimination may lead LGBTQ folks to conceal their sexual orientation or gender identity from providers or avoid seeking care altogether. We can help create safe spaces by supporting the<a href="https://www.hrc.org/resources/the-equality-act"> </a><a href="https://www.hrc.org/resources/the-equality-act">Equality Act</a> and speaking up against<a href="https://www.thetrevorproject.org/trvr_press/the-trevor-project-condemns-florida-governor-for-signing-anti-trans-sports-ban-on-the-first-day-of-pride-month/"> </a><a href="https://www.thetrevorproject.org/trvr_press/the-trevor-project-condemns-florida-governor-for-signing-anti-trans-sports-ban-on-the-first-day-of-pride-month/">Anti-Transgender Sports Bans</a>.</p> <p>At MHA,&nbsp;we believe that LGBTQ peers deserve to feel pride in their mental health. We need to build safe spaces where they can feel this pride. Building safe spaces include asking Congress to fund<a href="https://mhanational.salsalabs.org/advocacymondaysweek3crisisservicesandsuicideprevention/index.html"> </a><a href="https://mhanational.salsalabs.org/advocacymondaysweek3crisisservicesandsuicideprevention/index.html">mental health crisis services</a> that identify meeting LGBTQ youth and adults where they are, such as in school and community settings and not in jails or hospitals.</p> <p>It also includes supporting the<a href="https://mhanational.salsalabs.org/advocacymondaysweek4peersupportandequity/index.html"> </a><a href="https://mhanational.salsalabs.org/advocacymondaysweek4peersupportandequity/index.html">Promoting Effective and Empowering Recovery Services (PEERS)</a> in Medicare Act of 2021, which promotes the use of peer support specialists as part of integrated care in Medicare. The PEERS bill is important since peer support reduces hospital admission rates, increases social support and social functioning, and decreases substance use and depression.</p> <p>Take this important action and share our<a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/bipoclgbtq"> </a><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/bipoclgbtq">BIPOC LGBTQ Peer Support Survey</a>. This survey helps ensure that the experiences of LGBTQ peers are heard. Help us ensure that LGBTQ peers feel pride in their mental health.</p> <div> <hr size="1" /> <div id="ftn1"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref1" name="_ftn1" title="">[1]</a> https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3698841/</em></p> </div> <div id="ftn2"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref2" name="_ftn2" title="">[2]</a> https://camphro.files.wordpress.com/2016/03/outreach-materials-mh-movement.pdf</em></p> </div> <div id="ftn3"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref3" name="_ftn3" title="">[3]</a> https://www.thetrevorproject.org/survey-2021/</em></p> </div> <div id="ftn4"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref4" name="_ftn4" title="">[4]</a>https://mhanational.org/mental-health-and-covid-19-what-mha-screening-data-tells-us-about-impact-pandemic</em></p> </div> <div id="ftn5"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref5" name="_ftn5" title="">[5]</a>https://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/topics-objectives/topic/lesbian-gay-bisexual-and-transgender-health</em></p> </div> <div id="ftn6"> <p><em><a href="#_ftnref6" name="_ftn6" title="">[6]</a> https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6165713/</em></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/lgbt-mental-health" hreflang="en">LGBT Mental Health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19426&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="HRO302liUp7GtkTzIk7Wk4G2NFbuQEAqs89OwJOCWLA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 07 Jun 2021 14:44:12 +0000 JCheang 19426 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/lgbtq-peers-deserve-feel-pride-too#comments How the Human-Animal Bond Increases Resilience and Empowers Us to Thrive https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/how-human-animal-bond-increases-resilience-and-empowers-us-thrive <span>How the Human-Animal Bond Increases Resilience and Empowers Us to Thrive</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2021-05/pexels-samson-katt-5255626.jpg" alt="African American female freelancer with netbook near dog" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 05/17/2021 - 10:37</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">May 17, 2021 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Steven Feldman, President of the Human-Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI)</em></p> <p>Pets have been a bright spot in people’s lives throughout the pandemic, providing unconditional love and support. Approximately 11 million U.S. households brought home a new pet during the pandemic<a href="#_edn1" name="_ednref1" title="">[1]</a>, and pet owners overwhelmingly reported that they could not have made it through the toughest parts of lockdowns and quarantines without them.</p> <p>Now more than ever, people need resources and support to improve and maintain good mental health. The good news is that the human-animal bond – our mutually beneficial relationship with our pets – can support better mental health for people of all ages, in good times and in bad. &nbsp;</p> <p>With <a href="https://www.mhanational.org/mental-health-month">Mental Health America’s Tools 2 Thrive</a> topics in mind, the <a href="https://habri.org/">Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI)</a> compiled scientific research and information on the many ways that pets can help improve mental health, foster resilience, and empower us to thrive.</p> <p><strong>Adapting after trauma and stress</strong></p> <p>Research shows that the emotional<a href="#_edn2" name="_ednref2" title="">[2]</a> and social support<a href="#_edn3" name="_ednref3" title="">[3]</a> pets provide helps buffer stress, promote resilience, and recover from adverse circumstances.</p> <p>Studies have demonstrated that pet owners recover faster from stressful events than non-pet-owners<a href="#_edn4" name="_ednref4" title="">[4]</a> and also that the simple act of petting an animal reduces anxiety<a href="#_edn5" name="_ednref5" title="">[5]</a>. Science has shown that pets activate oxytocin in our bodies’ systems and reduce cortisol levels in our brains, documenting the physiological mechanism behind stress reduction and improved well-being<a href="#_edn6" name="_ednref6" title="">[6]</a> <a href="#_edn7" name="_ednref7" title="">[7]</a>.</p> <p>For those recovering from trauma, regular interaction with animals in a structured intervention has been found to reduce participants’ self-reported fear and anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbance<a href="#_edn8" name="_ednref8" title="">[8]</a> <a href="#_edn9" name="_ednref9" title="">[9]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Dealing with anger and frustration</strong></p> <p>One great tip for coping with anger and frustration is changing one’s surroundings or finding a welcome distraction. Pets are good for both - try playing with your cat or dog!</p> <p>One study found that pets helped people cope with depression and other mental health issues<a href="#_edn10" name="_ednref10" title="">[10]</a> by serving as a distraction from typical symptoms and encouraging meaningful activity<a href="#_edn11" name="_ednref11" title="">[11]</a>.Walking, exercising, or playing with pets is associated with greater happiness and less stress relative to other activities<a href="#_edn12" name="_ednref12" title="">[12]</a>. Science shows that pets can instill feelings of happiness in people and improve mood. Pet owners also laugh more often than non-pet-owners<a href="#_edn13" name="_ednref13" title="">[13]</a>.</p> <p>Research suggests that pet owners often derive the same amount of overall social support from their pets as from their parents or siblings. This support is another contributing factor to the greater levels of well-being and happiness that pet owners tend to experience <a href="#_edn14" name="_ednref14" title="">[14]</a> <a href="#_edn15" name="_ednref15" title="">[15]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Taking time for yourself</strong></p> <p>Moving your body is a great way to take some time for yourself. Research shows that spending time in nature can be restorative, allowing the brain to rest and process information<a href="#_edn16" name="_ednref16" title="">[16]</a>. A pet can be a great reason to get outside and walk, and research shows that dog owners walk more often than non-owners<a href="#_edn17" name="_ednref17" title="">[17]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Processing big changes</strong></p> <p>It goes without saying that the pandemic brought unexpected changes to people’s lives. In providing consistency, companionship, and purpose, pets have helped us process the pandemic and feelings of uncertainty<a href="#_edn18" name="_ednref18" title="">[18]</a>.</p> <p>Keeping up with self-care is so important for processing change. When so much can feel overwhelming, it’s easy to stay in bed or on the couch. Keeping up with normal, healthy habits is important. Pets can encourage us to adhere to our routines and add structure to our lives<a href="#_edn19" name="_ednref19" title="">[19]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Self-acceptance</strong></p> <p>Taking care of our pets can even positively change the way we think about ourselves.</p> <p>People recovering from serious mental health conditions have commonly reported feeling a sense of control when they successfully care for a pet, which can increase feelings of self-efficacy<a href="#_edn20" name="_ednref20" title="">[20]</a>.</p> <p>Pets also offer unconditional love for their owners, which can be deeply validating for people facing social stigma for mental health conditions<a href="#_edn21" name="_ednref21" title="">[21]</a> <a href="#_edn22" name="_ednref22" title="">[22]</a>. Pets are non-judgmental, non-evaluative, and accepting<a href="#_edn23" name="_ednref23" title="">[23]</a>, which can be particularly beneficial for buffering stress and social anxiety in children<a href="#_edn24" name="_ednref24" title="">[24]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Mindfulness</strong></p> <p>The simple routines associated with pet care can help people stay mindful and in the present. A study of pet owners living with a long-term mental health condition found that pets may disrupt inward attention from harmful symptoms or upsetting thoughts such as suicidal ideation. Pet care, such as regular feeding, walking, and play, can provide people with an opportunity to focus their attention and ground themselves in their day-to-day lives<a href="#_edn25" name="_ednref25" title="">[25]</a>.</p> <p><strong>Resources on the Human-Animal Bond</strong></p> <p>The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) is proud to partner with Mental Health America to raise awareness of the mental health benefits of the human-animal bond. For more information about the science of the human-animal bond, please visit <a href="http://www.habri.org">www.habri.org</a>.</p> <div>&nbsp; <hr size="1" /> <div id="edn1"> <p><a href="#_ednref1" name="_edn1" title="">[1]</a> <a href="http://todaysveterinarybusiness.com/pets-appa-survey-covid/">“Pets Remain In High Demand During COVID.” Today's Veterinary Business, Oct. 2020, todaysveterinarybusiness.com/pets-appa-survey-covid/.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn2"> <p><a href="#_ednref2" name="_edn2" title="">[2]</a> <a href="https://bmcpsychiatry.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12888-018-1613-2">Brooks, Helen Louise, et al. "The power of support from companion animals for people living with mental health problems: a systematic review and narrative synthesis of the evidence."&nbsp;BMC psychiatry&nbsp;18.1 (2018): 1-12.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn3"> <p><a href="#_ednref3" name="_edn3" title="">[3]</a> <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/08927936.2017.1311050?casa_token=oAK32SkqTusAAAAA:My1Vri6cT64e4LVBiXQmhESjh31c8Pm5AGMvtkWb0jxDJhOiA1OXzxEM_3GQ3siKkWFXXvW__5c">Meehan, Michael, Bronwyn Massavelli, and Nancy Pachana. "Using attachment theory and social support theory to examine and measure pets as sources of social support and attachment figures."&nbsp;anthrozoös&nbsp;30.2 (2017): 273-289.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn4"> <p><a href="#_ednref4" name="_edn4" title="">[4]</a> <a href="https://journals.lww.com/psychosomaticmedicine/Fulltext/2002/09000/Cardiovascular_Reactivity_and_the_Presence_of.5.aspx">Allen, Karen, Jim Blascovich, and Wendy B. Mendes. "Cardiovascular reactivity and the presence of pets, friends, and spouses: The truth about cats and dogs."&nbsp;Psychosomatic medicine&nbsp;64.5 (2002): 727-739.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn5"> <p><a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1061580031000091582?casa_token=Kz7OeOR13u8AAAAA:3SmI8Y6H16vLtejzxJh0wnvbcrSkUafurbMCez_PVmhJ5dH9Xga6UHmPQokigI3b0haBx778DyY">[5] Shiloh, Shoshana, Gal Sorek, and Joseph Terkel. "Reduction of state-anxiety by petting animals in a controlled laboratory experiment."&nbsp;Anxiety, stress, and coping&nbsp;16.4 (2003): 387-395.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn6"> <p><a href="#_ednref6" name="_edn6" title="">[6]</a> <a href="https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2012.00234/full">Beetz, A., Uvnäs-Moberg, K., Julius, H., &amp; Kotrschal, K. (2012). Psychosocial and psychophysiological effects of human-animal interactions: the possible role of oxytocin. Frontiers in psychology, 3, 234</a>.</p> </div> <div id="edn7"> <p><a href="#_ednref7" name="_edn7" title="">[7]</a> <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S109002330200237X?casa_token=pxY2GbhwYUMAAAAA:5lPpNAb3ejmBr-S9eRR3NmW_tq9fsUfmh0fmyQZlIzI4NFs5hW5C6SkGiZtNjicvMvwidjZTXQ">Odendaal, J. S., &amp; Meintjes, R. A. (2003). Neurophysiological correlates of affiliative behaviour between humans and dogs. The Veterinary Journal, 165(3), 296-301.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn8"> <p><a href="#_ednref8" name="_edn8" title="">[8]</a> <a href="https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01121/full">O'haire, Marguerite Elizabeth, Noémie Adeline Guérin, and Alison Claire Kirkham. "Animal-assisted intervention for trauma: A systematic literature review."&nbsp;Frontiers in psychology&nbsp;6 (2015): 1121.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn9"> <p><a href="#_ednref9" name="_edn9" title="">[9]</a> <a href="https://library.oapen.org/bitstream/handle/20.500.12657/24992/1005110.pdf?sequence=1#page=30">O’Haire, Marguerite E., et al. "The impact of human-animal interaction in trauma recovery."&nbsp;New directions in the human-animal bond&nbsp;(2019): 15.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn10"> <p><a href="#_ednref10" name="_edn10" title="">[10]</a> <a href="https://habricentral.org/resources/58595">Brooks, H., Rushton, K., Walker, S., Lovell, K., &amp; Rogers, A. (2016). Ontological security and connectivity provided by pets: a study in the self-management of the everyday lives of people diagnosed with a long-term mental health condition.&nbsp;BMC psychiatry,&nbsp;16(1), 409.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn11"> <p><a href="#_ednref11" name="_edn11" title="">[11]</a> <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/18387357.2018.1485508?casa_token=wvcLHu018LoAAAAA:3_MFMhziP6vwUHli7eUFIIAhe2L_O0uVPNJkptEZWYotQ3hJylYNg1rHrlNajxeAF6YDTIyNGZI">Hayden-Evans, Maya, Ben Milbourn, and Julie Netto. "‘Pets provide meaning and purpose’: a qualitative study of pet ownership from the perspectives of people diagnosed with borderline personality disorder."&nbsp;Advances in Mental Health&nbsp;16.2 (2018): 152-162.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn12"> <p><a href="#_ednref12" name="_edn12" title="">[12]</a> <a href="https://idp.springer.com/authorize/casa?redirect_uri=https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11482-020-09908-0&amp;casa_token=uV2L-fkuu_oAAAAA:lB4T6tvukS8IhOkNjBVbDdp-RG0Ll7ebJarrw7oKup9mLsLm3GOw6d8PhUdnZK_yZZXSnREZOazMnaE">Kalenkoski, Charlene M., and Thomas Korankye. "Enriching Lives: How Spending Time with Pets is Related to the Experiential Well-Being of Older Americans."&nbsp;Applied Research in Quality of Life&nbsp;(2021): 1-22.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn13"> <p><a href="#_ednref13" name="_edn13" title="">[13]</a> <a href="https://habricentral.org/resources/21343">Valeri, R. M. (2006). Tails of laughter: A pilot study examining the relationship between companion animal guardianship (pet ownership) and laughter.&nbsp;Society &amp; Animals,&nbsp;14(3), 275-293.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn14"> <p><a href="#_ednref14" name="_edn14" title="">[14]</a> <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037/a0024506">McConnell, A. R., Brown, C. M., Shoda, T. M., Stayton, L. E., &amp; Martin, C. E. (2011). Friends with benefits: on the positive consequences of pet ownership. Journal of personality and social psychology, 101(6), 1239.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn15"> <p><a href="#_ednref15" name="_edn15" title="">[15]</a> <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fa0014979" target="_blank">Kurdek, L. A. (2009). Pet dogs as attachment figures for adult owners.&nbsp;Journal of Family Psychology, 23(4), 439–446.&nbsp;https://doi.org/10.1037/a0014979</a></p> </div> <div id="edn16"> <p><a href="#_ednref16" name="_edn16" title="">[16]</a> <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0272494495900012">Kaplan, S. (1995). The restorative benefits of nature: Toward an integrative framework. Journal of environmental psychology, 15(3), 169-182.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn17"> <p><a href="#_ednref17" name="_edn17" title="">[17]</a> <a href="https://habricentral.org/resources/34617">Reeves, M. J., Rafferty, A. P., Miller, C. E., &amp; Lyon-Callo, S. K. (2011). The impact of dog walking on leisure-time physical activity: results from a population-based survey of Michigan adults. Journal of Physical Activity and health, 8(3), 436-444.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn18"> <p><a href="#_ednref18" name="_edn18" title="">[18]</a> <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/psycarticles/2020-43444-001.pdf">Nieforth, Leanne O., and Marguerite E. O'Haire. "The role of pets in managing uncertainty from COVID-19."&nbsp;Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy&nbsp;(2020).</a></p> </div> <div id="edn19"> <p><a href="#_ednref19" name="_edn19" title="">[19]</a> <a href="https://bmcpsychiatry.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12888-016-1111-3?utm_source=facilisimo.com&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=facilisimo">Brooks H, et al. Ontological security and connectivity provided by pets: a study in the self-management of the everyday lives of people diagnosed with a long-term mental health condition. BMC Psychiatry. 2016;16(1):409.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn20"> <p><a href="#_ednref20" name="_edn20" title="">[20]</a> <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1037/a0016812?casa_token=qeIznE1HzfAAAAAA:MsodyUtWa9mL5yAx3BiuJ44WvS-EkaaqHGxa5KtAQLmLdD5JMhsA-r8UYdO6kUw7j7HW7RZ1E4sK">Wisdom, Jennifer P., Goal Auzeen Saedi, and Carla A. Green. "Another breed of “service” animals: STARS study findings about pet ownership and recovery from serious mental illness."&nbsp;American Journal of Orthopsychiatry&nbsp;79.3 (2009): 430-436.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn21"> <p><a href="#_ednref21" name="_edn21" title="">[21]</a> <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01642121003736101?casa_token=N02BKHvTFl8AAAAA:B_nCFzX8jWJEW1GNsjNbhEleEfFsv8b7W4wu95-InCMLqGmAroD0JvXjFiLeCgQbP6kLUEyWnuw">Zimolag, Ulrike, and Terry Krupa. "The occupation of pet ownership as an enabler of community integration in serious mental illness: a single exploratory case study."&nbsp;Occupational Therapy in Mental Health&nbsp;26.2 (2010): 176-196.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn22"> <p><a href="#_ednref22" name="_edn22" title="">[22]</a> <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780128129623000101">Brooks, Helen, and Anne Rogers. "The Role of Pets in the Personal Communities of People Living With Long-Term Conditions."&nbsp;Clinician's Guide to Treating Companion Animal Issues. Academic Press, 2019. 159-172.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn23"> <p><a href="#_ednref23" name="_edn23" title="">[23]</a> <a href="https://habricentral.org/resources/62558" target="_blank">Purewal, R., Christley, R., Kordas, K., Joinson, C., Meints, K., Gee, N., &amp; Westgarth, C. (2017). Companion animals and child/adolescent development: a systematic review of the evidence.&nbsp;International journal of environmental research and public health, 14(3), 234.</a></p> </div> <div id="edn24"> <p><a href="#_ednref24" name="_edn24" title="">[24]</a> <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/sode.12203?campaign=W1604%3Felq_mid%3D30640&amp;elqTrack=true&amp;elq_cid=4350828">Kertes DA, Liu J, Hall NJ, Hadad NA, Wynne CDL, Bhatt SS. Effect of Pet Dogs on Children’s Perceived Stress and Cortisol Stress Response. Soc Dev. 2017;26(2):382–401. doi:10.1111/sode.12203</a></p> </div> <div id="edn25"> <p><a href="#_ednref25" name="_edn25" title="">[25]</a> <a href="https://habricentral.org/resources/58595">Brooks, H., Rushton, K., Walker, S., Lovell, K., &amp; Rogers, A. (2016). Ontological security and connectivity provided by pets: a study in the self-management of the everyday lives of people diagnosed with a long-term mental health condition.&nbsp;BMC psychiatry,&nbsp;16(1), 409.</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/pets" hreflang="en">pets</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=19352&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="_uMmZjiJtxGrmuWn2Zm93uQJkkd0WJnvEd-AjBQeZHs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 17 May 2021 14:37:23 +0000 JCheang 19352 at https://staging.mhanational.org https://staging.mhanational.org/blog/how-human-animal-bond-increases-resilience-and-empowers-us-thrive#comments