Veterans and Mental Health

Mental Illness Often Plagues Those in the Military Even though the United States has made an effort to increase awareness and support for those struggling with mental illness, more and more people still struggle with their mental health. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that one in five adults in the U.S. lives with a mental illness, equaling as much as 46.6 million Americans. Unfortunately, that number continues to rise. Mental illness can affect anyone from any demographic. One particular group that does not receive the attention they deserve is veterans. In a recent report from a Veterans Affairs analysis, the rate of veterans’ suicides continues to rise, reporting a 6.1% increase in the number of suicide deaths from 2005 to 2017. While this number may not seem large, it’s important to know that the number of veterans in the United States continues to decrease as older generations get age. This population dropped 18% from 2005 to 2017. With the Veteran population getting smaller, and Veteran suicides increasing, this statistic is alarming. With Veterans Day approaching on November 11th, the team at Lifeworks Counseling Center would like to increase awareness on the growing struggles of mental illness within the…

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How Sports Affects Your Mental Health

Sports Have a Positive Impact on Your Mental Health Sports have become an integral part of Americans’ lives, from their days as youths engaging in team sports to becoming dedicated professional sports fans. As you progress through school, playing sports has become a coming of age moment for many. Many parents often played sports in their youth and encourage their young ones to play, as well. The physical health benefits for playing sports and exercising are well documented, including: Maintaining a healthy weight Building strong bones and muscles Lowering blood pressure and cholesterol Reducing the risk of heart disease And much more While many of us are quite aware of the obvious physical benefits organized sports have on your body, sports’ effects on your mental health are often overlooked or just not mentioned. However, the impact on your mental health is quite large, extending throughout your entire life. Lifeworks Counseling Center is here to explain just how powerful participating in organized sports can be for you and your loved ones. Provides Social Connections One of the greatest things that sports offer you is the chance to interact with other people. Humans are inherently social beings. We strive to make social…

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October 10th: World Mental Health Day

Anyone Can Help Spread Awareness for Mental Health We all know how important taking care of one’s health is. Being sick can cause you to miss work or school. It can even affect how well you can complete everyday tasks like cooking, cleaning, and more. While it is incredibly important to make sure your body is healthy, it is equally as important to make sure that your mind is healthy as well. That is why the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) established October 10th as World Mental Health Day. On this day, you can join others who advocate for mental health awareness with the hopes of improving the mental health of people all across the globe. Mental health struggles can affect anyone, regardless of their race, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. WFMH established World Mental Health Day to educate those around the world about mental health and advocate against the social stigma surrounding mental illness. 2019 Theme: Suicide Prevention This year the WFMH has chosen to make suicide prevention World Mental Health Day’s theme. Suicide has been a constant throughout most of history. However, due to complex reasons, the rates of suicides throughout the world continue to increase to…

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Discussing Bullying with Your Children

Bullying Can Have Lasting Effects on All Children As your children grow up, they face many new challenges. Whether it be new subjects in school they struggle to comprehend, growing competition in sports, trying to navigate romantic relationships, or puberty, your child will experience plenty of new things as they go through school. However, weaved within these experiences happens to be something no parent wants their child to go through, and that’s bullying. We often see bullying depicted in movies and TV shows where a larger individual often picks on a smaller child who is seen as nerdy. The only reason they are viewed as nerdy or “uncool” is either because of their looks, wearing glasses or dressing a certain way, or doing well in school. However, not all bullying looks this way. Bullying remains prevalent in schools. While it has gone down from 23% of children being bullied in 2005 to 20% in 2016, it remains a real threat to children from elementary school through high school. What is Bullying? To understand how to discuss bullying with your kids, you must first understand what it is. While there is no specific definition for it, it is often described as…

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September: National Suicide Prevention Month

Suicide Rates are Constantly on the Rise Every Year Suicide is becoming a growing health concern in this country. It has become one of the leading causes of death within the United States. Suicidal thoughts do not discriminate. No matter your age, race, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, or education level, suicidal thoughts can still occur. Unfortunately, the rates of suicide are only increasing. Due to this shocking realization, organizations and people are across the country recognize September as National Suicide Prevention Month. September is a time for drawing the nation’s attention to the problem that is plaguing our country. It is a time for sharing stories and resources with the hopes of ending the stigma surrounding mental illness. This month is used as a chance to help those who are suffering from mental health issues, been affected personally by suicide, and raise awareness on this taboo topic. Suicide is often the result of a medical condition going untreated, yet these mental illnesses do not receive the resources and help they deserve. That is why September is National Suicide Prevention Month. Lifeworks Counseling Center and all other organizations across the country hope to reduce the number of deaths every year while…

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Going Back to School and Children’s Mental Health

The Start of a New School Year May Give Children Anxiety August typically indicates the start of a new school year for many young children. It gives them a chance to experience new settings, learn new information, and see their friends. However, the beginning of the school year also leads to an increase in anxiety for many children. Going back to school may be exciting for many, but it can also be dangerous to children’s mental health. Schools are effectively jobs where kids are incredibly micromanaged by their teachers. These working conditions are extremely stressful for adults, let alone children. It is no wonder why going back to school leads to a decline in children’s mental health. Going Back to School Increases Psychiatric Hospital Admissions  The summer months are a time for children to relax and enjoy their stress-free everyday lives. Kids get to relax and refresh themselves, being free from the stress of working in a classroom. Unfortunately for many parents, once the school year begins, there is a rise in mental health crises in school-aged children. According to one study, the average number of psychiatric hospital admissions dropped from 32 to 22 per 100,000 school-aged children over the…

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Learning to be Happy While Single

Being Single Doesn’t Mean You Can’t Also Be Happy It can sometimes feel like being single is treated as some terrible condition that no one wants. The popularity of social media allows those in a couple to broadcast their relationships for the world to see, while also alienating those who are single. Many people see being single as a bad thing. While it is not always easy, it is still possible to be happy while single. While being in a relationship can be great, it isn’t necessarily superior to being single. Even though you may want a relationship and a partner, you can still find happiness while being alone. Here are some tips to help you learn to be happy while single. Learn from the Past but Don’t Let It Ruin Your Future.  There are plenty of people out there who are scarred from things they experienced in past relationships, making it difficult for them to find happiness again. So, what should you do if these painful moments are stopping you from trying to find love again? First, you need to do everything you can to stop thinking about your ex. Unfollow them on all social media and stop talking…

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Foods to Improve Your Mental Health

A Healthy Diet Can Help Improve Your Mood Many people who struggle with their mental health tend to look for a quick fix. Unfortunately, there is no remedy that will immediately relieve them of their anxiety or depression symptoms. However, there are changes in lifestyle that, over the long run, can help as an overall treatment. One of these lifestyle changes involves your diet. There are plenty of foods that can improve your mental health. Obviously eating one meal is not going to cure you of your condition, but consistently eating healthy can help relieve you of some of your chronic symptoms and get in a more positive mood. Here are some of the foods known to improve your mental health. Fatty Fish In most American’s diet, they are sorely missing too much omega-3 fatty acids. Instead, they are supplemented with trans fats and saturated fats which have been known to have negative effects on the brain. Our brains are mostly composed of fats, and since our bodies can’t produce their own essential fatty acids, our diet must consist of foods rich in omega-3s to meet our body’s needs. Cold water fish such as salmon, herring, sardines, and mackerel all…

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Social Media and Mental Health

In this vastly improving digital age, social media’s place in the online world has continued to expand, increasing its effects on the internet and on many users. You would be hard pressed to find someone that doesn’t use social media to some extent during their day. In the U.S., roughly 77% of Americans have a profile on one social media platform or another. With so many individuals using social media daily, many researchers and users alike have begun to wonder what effect social media really has on us, especially our mental health. While many individuals have been quick to demonize social media and its overall effect on its users, these social networking platforms do have their share of benefits. Benefits of Social Media  Social media has presented an area for adolescents to enhance their communication skills and improve their social connections. While they may not be able to interact with each other face to face, they are still able to create new relationships, exchange thoughts and ideas, develop new interests, and experiment with different forms of self-expression. Many use social media as a place to further build on relationships they have created in the real world, sharpening their basic social…

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Benefits of Exercising for Mental Health

It seems almost common knowledge now about how inactivity typically leads to chronic and dangerous health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and many more. This has led many of us to make an effort to exercise more, but did you know how important and beneficial exercising is for your mental health? All across the world, depression and anxiety rates are higher than ever. Many things play a factor in this from society’s focus on one’s image online to poor diets. Regardless of the cause, it is still a growing concern in all corners of the world. While there are many treatments methods for your mental health, exercise is often overlooked by some as a way to improve your mental wellbeing, but its benefits have been proven. Here are some of the benefits exercise can have on your mental health: Increase in Happy Brain Chemicals: Endorphins are chemicals in the brain that create feelings of happiness, making you feel good. Exercise actually releases more endorphins, providing you with a boost in your spirits. During and after exercise, your brain will have released enough endorphins to leave you feeling much more energized and in a better mood. Reduces Stress: Stress…

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