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National Depression Screening Day is just around the corner (October 10th!)

Mark Dombeck, Ph.D. was Director of Mental Help Net from 1999 to 2011. Dr. Dombeck received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 1995 ...Read More

Feeling sad, stressed or anxious? A normal reaction to life events or something more?Learn more at National Depression Screening Day (NDSD) on October 10th With the crisis on Wall Street, a boom of home foreclosures, and high energy and food prices throughout the country, no one can blame you for feeling anxious or overwhelmed. These days it is common and understandable to be angry, worried and even gloomy, especially if you lost your retirement fund, your job, your house, or are stressed about paying the bills. Worry, anger and stress are normal, appropriate and even necessary during life’s difficult moments. But when negative feelings prevent you from doing your daily activities or interacting with friends and loved ones, it might be time to seek help.

NDSD, held on October 10 at close to a thousand sites nationwide, can help. At this free, public event you can take an anonymous test to see if you might suffer from depression or a related disorder and learn how to get help. At National Depression Screening Day, you can take just a few minutes to complete a questionnaire that gauges your likelihood for depression, generalized anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder and bipolar disorder. Each participating location offers a wide range of educational resources on these disorders, geared toward a variety of audiences – so you can attend a screening event if you’re concerned for yourself, or if you’re worried about someone close to you. You will also have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with a mental health professional to talk about your personal concerns.

To find a site near you or to take a screening online, visit www.MentalHealthScreening.org. Some facts about depression:

  • Depressive disorders affect approximately 18.8 million American adults or about 9.5% of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year.

  • Trauma, loss of a loved one, a difficult relationship, or any stressful situation may trigger a depressive episode. Subsequent depressive episodes may occur with or without an obvious trigger.

  • Depressive disorders costs employers more than US$51 billion per year in absenteeism and lost productivity, not including high medical and pharmaceutical bills.

  • More than 80 percent of people with clinical depression can be successfully treated. With early recognition, intervention, and support, most individuals can lead productive lives.

Screening for Mental Health Inc® is the non-profit organization that first introduced the concept of large-scale mental health screenings with its flagship program National Depression Screening Day in 1991. SMH programs now include both in-person and online programs for depression, bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, eating disorders, alcohol problems, and suicide prevention. SMH programs have been used by hospitals, mental health centers, social service agencies, government agencies, older adult facilities, primary care clinicians, colleges, secondary schools, corporations, military installations and HMOs, reaching individuals ranging from teens to older adults. For more information about National Depression Screening Day, to locate a site that is offering screening on October 10th or to take a screening online, visit www.MentalHealthScreening.org.

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