Week 4: 2022 Mental Health Awareness Month | Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium

Week 4: 2022 Mental Health Awareness Month

May 25, 2022




Week 4, May 23-31: What to do if needing help and where to go

What we will learn:

  • Identify what to do if you need help
  • Decide where to go to seek help

When living with a mental health condition or facing a mental health concern, it’s common to feel like no one understands what you are going through. 

Mental health conditions can be hard and confusing.

Talking about mental health in the open is becoming more common. Stigma or judgment about mental health conditions can affect how you might internalize your experiences. This self-stigma can make it difficult to talk about your concerns.

Admit to yourself that you are struggling.

Accepting that you might have a mental health condition can be scary. Admitting that you are struggling can put you on a path to getting the help you deserve.

Talk to someone you trust.

Knowing what to say can be hard, but just naming what you are experiencing is a good start. Friends and family can be key supporters. Journaling or writing a letter is a way for you to gather your thoughts and feelings.

Talk to a professional.

Professionals such as your Primary Care Provider or Doctor are here to help you and provide you with the resources you deserve.

The mental health care system does not meet everyone’s needs.

Finding the right care for you is important. The medical model of understanding and treating health conditions, which focuses on the diagnosis and management of symptoms, may not be the best fit. There are other types of treatment such as community care, culturally based practices and self-directed care. Consider support groups or peer support.

Where to go for help.

If you are having a mental health crisis (thinking about hurting yourself or someone else), call the Careline1-877-266-4357, go to your local Emergency Room or clinic, call 911 or the local Village Police Officer as soon as possible. You can also text “4help” to 839863 for confidential crisis text services.

To seek help when not in crisis, reach out to your support system, primary care provider, employee assistance program, place of worship, the Careline, local behavioral or mental health center. The ANTHC Behavioral Health Wellness Clinic offers telehealth counseling, assessments and referral support to adult beneficiaries anywhere in Alaska. You can access our care from your personal cell phone or computer. To learn more or become a client, visit www.anthc.org/bhwc or call (907) 729-2492 Monday-Friday from 8:30 am-5:00 pm.

Activity: Build or grow your support system.

Having people in your life that you relate to and lean on goes a long way in improving your mood and overall well-being. We are social beings; we are wired to seek connection.

Aim to:

★ Create a list of the people you can lean on and your support resources.

★ Build or grow your support system:

★ Connect with others over shared hobbies

★ Connect with a new resource such as the ANTHC Behavioral Health Wellness Clinic

★ Consider volunteering – a great way to feel less alone, meet new people and to learn about local events and resources.

★ Focus on quality relationships – having one person you can really trust serves you better than many surface-level connections.

Reflection

When living with a mental health condition or facing a mental health concern, it is important to remember that you are not alone – help is out there, and recovery is possible. Having a strong social support system can prevent mental health symptoms from developing into a diagnosable mental health condition and improve outcomes in recovery from a mental health condition.

  • When creating your list of people and resources, what did you notice?
  • Did you add a new person or resource to your list?

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