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#JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – New #Anxiety Center In #Seattle Focused On Bridging The Gap In #HealthCare System Comes To First Hill

The #mentalhealthcrisis during the #pandemic has put strain on the healthcare system as more and more people need treatment.

Kaila Lafferty


Pathlight Mood & #Anxiety Center located in #SwedishMedicalCenter – First Hill is set to open in just two weeks with the goal of bridging a gap in the #mentalhealthsystem.

“The hope is that the more of these middle level – kind of intensive – but in the middle levels of care that we can provide, the less pressure there is on the system as whole,” said Robert Mcferren, clinical director at Pathlight Mood & #Anxiety Center.

Pathlight Mood & #Anxiety Center treats people of all #genders and ages, from #adults to #adolescents and #children.

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

In early 2021, Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency in #Washington over the youth #mentalhealth crisis.

#SwedishMedicalCenter reported inpatient admissions related to #mentalhealth increased from 6% in 2019 to nearly 25% in the first few months of 2021.

Pathlight addresses #mentalhealth concerns with a trans diagnostic model targeted at all age groups.

“They’re going to receive individual therapy. Family therapy. They’re going to receive med management from a licensed #psychiatrist, as well as several groups per day. So up to four skills groups a day where they’re going to learn the skills to better manage their emotions and respond to situations in ways that are going to give them better outcomes,” Mcferren explained.

The center has 36 beds,18 for #adults and 18 for #children.

But how can just 36 beds aid in the major #mentalhealthcrisis #Washington is facing?

Mcferren says time and individualized care.

“Yeah, so that’s 36 people at a time. So when we’re looking at really for looking at training people for about four weeks, four to six total, that’s hundreds of people every year that we can treat,” he explained, “Having only 36 beds really allows us to have our therapists carry smaller caseloads, and have our #psychiatrist really carry smaller cases as well so that we can focus on their individualized care and really give them what they need.”

The center will start accepting patients November 15, 2021.

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#JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – How A New Tool Could Reduce #Suicide Among #Teens

Researchers from BYU, Johns Hopkins and Harvard have created a computer algorithm they say predicts with 91% accuracy which #youths have suicidal thoughts and #behaviors

By Lois M. Collins@Loisco

Suicides across the nation dropped very slightly during the #pandemic, after nearly 20 years of increases, according to federal data. Still, an astounding 46,000 #Americans across age groups took their own lives during 2020 — a number far higher than the entire #student body of any of Utah’s colleges or universities in a given year.

But a new tool has been created that could help #parents, #teachers, #school counselors and others identify youths who might be most at risk for #suicide with an eye toward targeting interventions. Researchers from Brigham Young University, Johns Hopkins and Harvard have created a computer algorithm they say predicts with 91% accuracy which youths have suicidal thoughts and #behaviors. The study’s “machine-learning approach” was explored this week in the journal PLOS ONE,

#Suicide is the second-leading cause of death for #adolescents in the #UnitedStates, behind unintentional injuries.

The algorithm was made by taking data from 179,384 junior and #highschool #students in Utah who took the biennial Student Health and Risk Prevention survey between 2011 and 2017. Among roughly 300 total questions, it asked whether, in the past year, a #student had thought about #suicide, planned #suicide or tried to take their own life. The researchers fed the entire 1.2 billion data points into a supercomputer to see if it could find correlation between other factors impacting the youths’ lives and their positive responses to the #suicide-related questions.

Being bullied and harassed online or at school are the top predictors of suicidal thoughts and #behaviors, according to the researchers. But negative family dynamics — including serious arguments, arguing repeatedly about the same things and name-calling and insults — also create risk that youths will at least contemplate #suicide.

Lower, but still on the top 10 list of factors, were whether the #adolescent felt safe at #school, the age when the #student first had more than a sip of #alcohol and how each felt about #marijuana use. The researchers noted #females and older #students (risk rises around ninth or 10th grade) were at higher risk of suicidal thoughts and planning compared to #males and younger #students, though more #males die by #suicide. How #students felt about their grades also predicts #suicideattempts.

“Research from the 2015 Youth Risk #Behavior Study has shown that #students who feel successful at #school are less likely to consider, plan or attempt #suicide,” the study says. “#School #healthprofessionals, state officials and other stakeholders should target #suicide prevention activities or provide grade remediation to assist #students at risk.”

Carl Hanson, a BYU public health professor, said if those with particular risk factors can be identified, it might be possible to curb the rate of #suicide.

“I think #suicide is certainly a public health concern. And it’s something that we all should be thinking about. I think we all have a responsibility to a rising generation,” he said.

Just knowing that #bullying or a volatile home life creates risk provides an opportunity to provide youths with support that can help them, he said, noting that knowledge can empower communities to strengthen families and address issues that impact #youths.

“The results are most usable by school #teachers and administrators who may consider how they monitor signs of #bullying. They might also build a positive #school climate through leadership and developmentally wise services among staff in the classroom, office, playfields and school bus settings,” said Michael Barnes, study co-author and associate dean in BYU’s College of Life Sciences.

Changing trajectories

Quinn Snell, a computer science professor at BYU, said he’d like to see #school counselors and public health officials take the study findings “and be able to say there are some important questions that we should be asking our #students and looking at to help them,” paying particular attention to preventing #bullying.

Identifying #children who are at risk and then trying to be proactive, rather than having to react after something serious happens, is vital, he said. Knowing that #bullying and #cyberbullying are key contributors could prompt #schools and #parents to ramp up efforts to address those issues, as well.

“Let’s make sure we’re having programs and are talking to kids about online #behavior and #bullying and helping them recognize the signs of that,” Snell said.

Families also need to know how what happens at #school and at home impacts their #children so they can create a supportive environment, he added.

Barnes agrees. He said the study makes clear that #schools cannot tackle #suicide effectively alone.

“Families matter a great deal. For example, StopBullying.gov recommends that community services and resources help families recognize the warning signs of #bullying, #cyberbullying and learn how to foster open lines of communication between #parents and #children,” he said.

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

All ages struggling

While the computer model identifies factors that impact #youths, the concern stretches across ages.

The Vital Statistics Rapid Release from the #CentersforDiseaseControlandPrevention that came out this week showed the number of suicides in 2020 (45,855) was 3% lower than in 2019, as was the rate (13.5 per 100,000 compared to 13.9 the previous year.) The rate dropped 2% in 2020 for #males and 8% for #females.

Most of the decline in the #suicide rate during the #pandemic was due to a decrease among whites, who account for a disproportionate share of suicides overall.

#CDC experts point out that even with modest declines, the numbers are near historic highs, as they’ve been climbing for nearly 20 years. The center said between 2000 and 2018, suicides increased by about 35%.

A decline was not seen across all demographic groups. The rates for young people ages 10-14, 15-24 and 25-34 all increased slightly compared to the previous year, though only the 5% jump among the latter group was statistically significant.

By gender, too, there were increases. Age adjusted #suicide rates among young #males ages 10 to 14 increased by 13%, while that rate for #females ages 15 to 24 was 4% higher. Neither, though, reached the level of statistical significance. But they certainly didn’t go down.

Suicides increased among #Black people ages 15-34 and #Hispanics 25-34. NPR pointed out that a study published in the Journal of the #American Academy of Child and #Adolescent Psychiatry this fall found the rise in #suicide rates among #Black #girls outpaced other groups.

“When we look at #suicide in the research, it’s very much white youth and white older #men. And unfortunately, that doesn’t help us in terms of creating prevention programming for #Black #youth and for #Hispanic #youth,” said Arielle Sheftall, principal investigator at the Center for #SuicidePrevention and Research and lead author on that study, who spoke to NPR’s Here & Now when the research was published in September.

“#Suicide is less predictable than other causes of death,” Sally Curtin, a statistician at the #CDC and lead author on the report, told NPR. “You can have an increase in risk factors for suicidal #behavior, such as #mentalhealthissues, #depression, #anxiety, substance abuse and #financial #stress … but it does not necessarily translate into an increase in deaths.”

Other members of the algorithm study team are Orion Weller of Johns Hopkins, Luke Sagers of Harvard and E. Shannon Tass of BYU.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, you can call the #NationalSuicidePreventionHotline 24 hours a day: 1-800-273-8255.

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#JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – Rewriting The Playbook: #Athletes And #MentalHealth

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Spectrum News Special: Raising awareness around #athletes’ #mentalhealth

By Spectrum News Staff Ohio

After a tumultuous year during the #pandemic, people around the globe were excited to hear that the 2020 #Tokyo #Olympics would be held in the summer of 2021. But while much of focus had been on the #athletes returning to the world stage, another topic branched out of the games — one that #athletes around the globe are increasingly raising awareness around: #Mentalhealth. 


#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 


While the topic has been talked about in the past, the way #athletes struggle with their #mentalhealth didn’t get much attention until the Tokyo #Olympics, when reigning #Olympic Gymnast #SimoneBiles pulled out of a few competitions. 

“I have to do what’s right for me and focus on my #mentalhealth, and not jeopardize my #health and well-being,” Biles said during the games. “It was like fighting all those demons.”

The move was praised and received backlash at the same time, but figures like Olympian #MichaelPhelps, #PresidentJoeBiden and hundreds of other #athletes supported Biles and even called attention to their own personal struggles with #mentalhealth. 

“#Mentalhealth over the last 18 months is something people are talking about,” Phelps said during the games, showing support for the gymnast. “We’re human beings. Nobody is perfect. So yes, it is OK not to be OK.”

During the Spectrum News special “Rewriting the Playbook: #Athletes and #MentalHealth,” we go beyond the headlines to the real story. We spoke with high-profile figures, like Ohio State University football’s Ryan Day and former U.S. Olympic Gymnast Dominique Moceanu.

That struggle is extremely common among #athletes here in Ohio and beyond, handling the every-day pressure to perform, dominate and succeed in their support.

“There’s a lot of guys that deal with it. There’s just a lot coming at these guys,” Day said. “We want to make sure that they have everything in place to build that foundation for when things go well or when things don’t go so well.”

Day said the university is trying to implement more resources to help #athletes’ #mentalhealth amid ongoing stressors. 

Dr. James Houle, a sports #psychologist at the Ohio State University, said much of the problem coming from #athletes is management between school, work, the sport and their own life outside of all of that.

“They’re not just going to practice; they’re doing study table and they are icing their knee, and they’re talking to their coach and meetings and all these different things,” Houle explained. “And then you layer on top of that #socialmedia, it feels like a lot of pressure. And so they’re talking about ‘How do I manage all of that?’ What do you tell them?”

Houle said he is a huge advocate of mindfulness. 

“Our ability to pay attention to the present moment on purpose, without judgment, because we can get so pulled up into our thoughts are pulled backwards into what happened — the ‘what ifs’ that it becomes very difficult to pay attention to just what’s actually happening,” he said. 

Coach Adam Jones of Cincinnati United Premier soccer club opened up about his family struggles with #mentalillness. 

“I had a younger brother. His name was Alex,” Jones said. “He’s two years younger than me. He suffered from Crohn’s disease, which is a disease in your intestinal track, and Alex started to not be able to perform in sports like he used to. His grades were suffering because he wasn’t in school very much. And he started to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.”

In the summer of 2009, Alex died by #suicide.

“We didn’t necessarily see that coming. Back then they didn’t really talk about #mentalhealth about #suicide. It wasn’t a story. It was kind of taboo,” Jones said. 

Throughout the special, guests talked about how #mentalhealth plays a role in their lives, and possible solutions to help #athletes who may be struggling. You can watch the full special in the clips above.

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#JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – Andrew Scott: ‘There’s A Real #Stigma About The #Male #MentalHealthCrisis’

Dublin-born Sherlock and Fleabag actor Andrew Scott talks to Prudence Wade about his latest role – helping to tackle the #male #mentalhealthcrisis with laughter and vulnerability

Andrew Scott was astonished to discover that 75 per cent of suicides in the UK are #men.

ANDREW Scott doesn’t always play the kindest characters on-screen – he’s known for villainous roles such as Moriarty in Sherlock and Max Denbigh in James Bond movie Spectre – but that really couldn’t be further from real life.

The actor is generous with his time and his thoughts, despite calling from Italy where he’s currently working 12 hour days shooting a new project. Scott is talking about #male #mentalhealth, and on discovering 75 per cent of suicides in the UK are men, says: “It’s an astonishing fact to learn, and something I didn’t know.”

Scott (45) says he considers #mentalhealth similar to the weather. “The weather is a changeable thing,” he says.

“If you’re in the driving rain, there’s no point in screaming up at the sky saying, ‘Please stop raining, please stop raining’. The best thing you can do is just accept it’s raining, and know that it will stop.”

For the Dublin-born star, a huge factor in the #male #mentalhealthcrisis is society’s perceived expectations of #men, to be ‘manly’ and have a stiff upper lip.

“I think it’s to do with vulnerability,” he muses.

“Expressing vulnerability is something that’s considered in some way a ‘feminine’ trait – but I think vulnerability is a brilliant trait in a person.”

“There’s a real #stigma about how we approach #mentalillness,” Scott continues.

“Not one of us would say, ‘I’ve never been physically ill’ – and in exactly the same way, it seems preposterous to me that we would say we’ve never had any #mentalillness.

“I think we associate #mentalhealth with having to check into somewhere or having to take medication, or being diagnosed with something. But I think we have to understand it’s on a spectrum. The difference between where we land on that spectrum has to do with communication.”

Particularly as a result of the #pandemic and what we’ve all been through during recent times, Scott argues now is “a good time to start talking”, as most of us have experienced – to some extent – emotions we might “have never felt before”, including a “lack of control and fear”.

Scott likes to talk about #mentalhealth with “a certain degree of lightness”, he says.

“There’s a duality that exists… It sounds odd for me to say that, but as long as you can be light about your darkness, I think you’re [going to be] alright.”

Warming to his theme, Scott continues: “It’s why sometimes funerals can be more enjoyable than weddings, because at a wedding sometimes people have this dreaded feeling of, you have to be happy, and it’s so comparative.

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

“We live in such an age of comparison with #socialmedia, and sometimes at a funeral – you don’t go up to somebody and go, ‘Oh my God, you look terrible’, if they’ve got mascara running down their face, because you’re not worrying.

“So people are going, ‘Here I am, I am a mess. It’s OK for me to cry’. And sometimes that’s when we feel incredibly bonded.”

Scott says laughter is key to maintaining his own #mentalhealth. “I try and laugh every day,” he says passionately.

“It’s such a human attribute – the animals, as much as I love them, they don’t laugh as much as we do. Sometimes I think we can measure someone’s humanity almost by how much they laugh every day and how much they’re able to appreciate laughing.

“[Sometimes you have to say] this is all ridiculous, this doesn’t end well for any of us – we’re all going to die. So in a way, you’ve got to laugh as much as you can – that’s my attitude certainly, as I move through life.”

Scott says exercise is also central to his #mental wellbeing (“without a shadow of a doubt”). Despite a gruelling schedule filming in Italy when all he might want to do is sit down at the end of a long day and eat pasta, he says: “I genuinely believe it’s an essential thing. With exercise, people think, ‘Oh my God, I have to be really fit or join a gym’, but there’s nothing I like more than going for a walk with somebody.”

Walks might feel “very 2020”, but “there’s something very beautiful about going for a walk with someone, because you can talk about things but you’re not facing each other,” says Scott. That’s why he supported the HUMEN charity’s Rise Against #Suicide Sunrise Walk on Sunday, which aims to ‘inspire more men to get active and talk’.

There’s another reason Scott likes a simple walk. “I love a non-event,” he says. “I like the day after a wedding or getting accidentally drunk on a Tuesday afternoon with your friends.

“Sometimes you can have really meaningful conversations just going for a walk – or hysterical conversations. Life happens in the in-between, because there’s no pressure.”

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  #JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – High Rate Of #Suicide Among Young, #AfricanAmerican #Boys, Data Shows

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By Erica Simon

The latest studies show an uptick in suicides in this demographic. Now, advocates are hoping we can ban together and put an end to the silent suffering.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — We all know life has taken a toll on #Americans in the last 20 months. But there is a group experts say is really going through it – young, #Black #boys.

The latest studies show there’s been an uptick in suicides in that demographic, and now, advocates are hoping we can ban together and put an end to the suffering in silence.

“There’s something going on in our #AfricanAmerican communities and we are not talking about it,” Angelina Hudson said.

Hudson works day and night to help families impacted by #mentalillness, and the signs and symptoms associated with them. As interim executive director of the #NationalAllianceonMentalHealth Greater Houston or #NAMI, she has seen a lot.

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

“Our young #AfricanAmerican #boys, ages 5-12, the uptick in #suicide is really grotesque,” she continued.

According to the latest data, #Black #children ages 5 to 12 are two times more likely to attempt #suicide than their white counterparts. #NAMI, the #CDC, and other #mentalhealth agencies said there are a number of factors contributing to #hopelessness nowadays. Bullying, grief over losing a loved one, losing the lifestyle they were used to pre-#pandemic, and #socialmedia pressures all play a part.

“I got to meet this standard. I got to meet that standard. This person is doing x, y, z, so I have to do that,” Ebony Scott explained about the way his children have felt.

Scotts is very hands-on with his three kids, and has noticed when they’ve struggled. His advice to other #Black #parents? Walk the walk.

“Are we willing to go get the counseling we’re encouraging our #children, or we should be encouraging our #children to go and get it? So it starts with us as #parents, as #adults, by leading by example, but then also taking our #children to go through the counseling or the therapy they may need to get through what they’re going through,” he said.

Hudson says oftentimes #Black #boys who act out in #school are miscategorized and overly disciplined. She believes all of us have to get to the root of the problem, so that every child – #Black or not – feels seen, valued, and has space to process trauma or whatever they’re feeling.

“Far too often when we see a child, I call it ‘coloring outside the lines,’ they’re punished. They’re placed in separate classrooms, in-school suspension. Alternative education programs, when really it’s not what’s wrong with them. The question is, what happened to them?”

#NAMI Greater Houston provides free help and resources. You can call them day or night, insured or not at 713-970-4419.

If you or someone you know is considering taking their life, you can contact the #NationalSuicideHotline at 1-800-273-8255.

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#JamesDonaldson on #MentalHealth – Notes From The Desk: Why We Need To Talk About #Suicide

By Sophia Mcdermott-Hughes

Content Warning: This op-ed contains mentions of #suicide.

It is terrifying to wake up one day wishing you were dead. 

That fear consumed me earlier this semester. I later discovered my #suicidalideation — the wish to be dead, but not necessarily to kill yourself — was a side effect of an antidepressant I had begun taking. I am off that medication and doing much better now. But the couple of weeks during which I cried myself to sleep nightly hoping I would not wake up the next morning continue to haunt me, especially in the wake of Yan’s death by #suicide.

I am not alone in feeling particularly raw these last few weeks; many other #students here have experience with suicidal thoughts and ideation or continue to experience them. Others have lost loved ones to #suicide or gone through traumatic periods trying to support loved ones through their own #mentalhealth struggles. 

The reality is that we are living in a dangerous age and a dangerous place. According to the #SuicidePrevention Resource Center, “Suicide is the leading cause of death among college and university #students.” Yet, even after losing one of our own to #suicide, why does it seem like no one is talking about it?

Every time I have mentioned my own experiences and trauma with suicidal thoughts in the wake of Yan’s death, my peers have responded in kind. I have walked away from those conversations feeling nourished by the trust and vulnerability of my classmates and the sense of comradery in grief and pain. It doesn’t make the hurt any lighter, but god is it such a relief to shoulder the burden together rather than alone. 

I think back to those lonely nights where I wished I were dead and realize these conversations are exactly what I needed. What a difference it would have made for me to know that I was not suffering alone, that there were those around me who were going through the same, or had gone through it and survived. I am so sad and so angry for the Sophia who felt they had no one to turn to, who went to class surrounded by people more like them than they ever knew and yet felt so alone.

We need to seriously think about what gets communicated when we don’t communicate. When the message after a student’s death by #suicide is: “Here are some resources that you should reach out to if you need help,” it puts the onus and responsibility on the person struggling. Suicidal thoughts, #depression and other #mentalhealth struggles are incredibly isolating as is. They tell you that you are alone in your suffering, and weak for it. That no one cares and no one will come to save you. 

In those dark weeks, it took all of my energy to get out of bed, to maybe make it to class (oftentimes I didn’t) and to function as somewhat of a human being. Every cell in my body was working in overdrive just to stay alive, and yet I was being asked to make all of these calls and chase after all of these resources and self-advocate time and time again on top of it all. It felt so isolating, unmanageable and deeply, deeply unfair. 

If the message when you need help is that you have to search for it yourself, all that many people will hear is that there is no help for them. 

Equally damaging is the message, while well-intentioned, to “check in on your friends.” Often, people experiencing suicidal thoughts view themselves as a huge burden on their friends and loved ones. The weight of our own sadness and hurt feels too large to bear, so how could we imagine putting that on the people we care about? When we hear over and over again this message that seems to imply that our friends are the ones responsible for our survival, it only heightens that feeling of being a burden and deepens the #isolation. 

The reality is that we are 20-year-olds. We are not equipped to handle our friends’ #mentalhealthcrises on our own, nor can we alone save our friends from the demons (and chemicals) within their own minds. 

#Suicide is an institutional failing, not an individual one. We as a community, and certainly Middlebury as an institution, have failed to create a culture where we can talk about #suicide and provide support for those experiencing suicidal thoughts or urges. We have failed to create room for those whose full effort is spent on surviving and celebrate them for doing so rather than punishing them for falling behind on schoolwork or missing classes. And we have failed now, in the wake of Yan’s death by #suicide, to show those experiencing similar struggles that we care at all. 

We need to change, and we need to talk about #suicide. Before it’s too late.

If you are thinking about suicide, please call the #NationalSuicidePreventionLifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255).

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 


Sophia McDermott-Hughes

Sophia McDermott-Hughes ’23 is an editor at large.

They previously served as a news editor and senior news writer.

McDermott-Hughes is a joint anthropology and Arabic major and Spanish minor.

Over the summer, they worked as a general assignment reporter at statewide digital newspaper VTDigger, focusing on issues relating to migrant workers and immigration.

In 2018 and 2019, McDermott-Hughes worked as a reporter on the Since Parkland Project, a partnership with the Trace and the Miami Herald, which chronicled the lives of the more than 1,200 children killed by gun violence in the #UnitedStates in the year since the #MarjoryStonemanDouglas #HighSchool shooting in Florida.

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#JamesDonaldson on #MentalHealth – Battling #Isolation And Building Resilience: The Future Of #Child And Family #MentalHealth In Hawaii

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Nicole Pasia

According to a December 2020 report from the Hawaii Department of Health’s Child and #Adolescent #MentalHealth Division (CAMHD), #suicide was the second-leading cause of death in young people in Hawaii. Experts say the #pandemic and #socialisolation have further stressed #mentalhealth among kids and their families. 

Get the latest state-specific policy intelligence for the health care sector delivered to your inbox.

State of Reform spoke with some of Hawaii’s #behavioralhealth experts on what the state, providers, schools, and communities can do to help. Here are a few key issues they brought up:

Major events have profound effects on community #mentalhealth 

Kumi Macdonald, executive director for the #NationalAllianceonMentalIllness (#NAMI) Hawaii, said the effects of the #pandemic and other widespread events directly correlate with the demand for #mentalhealthservices.

“Every time there was another spike in #COVID, or shutdowns, … the #BlackLivesMatter movement — things like that really did affect our community, and the calls would rise.”

For kids, the move back to in-person learning after a year of #socialisolation has proven difficult, according to Claudia Crist, CEO at Sutter Health K?hi M?hala, a West Oahu-based #behavioralhealth medical center.

“It’s almost like they’ve had what you could consider a ‘social regression’ … because they were isolated for such an extended period of time, they don’t feel as comfortable now, interacting in person with their own peers. According to our clinicians, they’re noticing this especially among early #teens, and tweens.” 

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

Importance of peer support groups

Research shows that the use of peer #mentalhealth support from those with similar lived experiences can reduce hospital stays, re-hospitalization rates, and lead to better health outcomes. 

Acting CAMHD Administrator Scott Shimabukuro, PhD, said in a statement that the agency is working to expand peer services for children and families:

“We’re working on creating a more robust peer support service array. This would include certifying more youth peers (young #adults who have lived experience in the #mentalhealth system as children or #adolescents) as well as #parent peers (parents with lived experience parenting a child with a #mentalhealth challenge).” 

Using telehealth to leverage access to care

With the stay-at-home orders in place during the #pandemic, Macdonald said the use of telehealth was a “silver lining” in increasing access to care. She said #NAMI HI was one of the first agencies in the state to move peer support services online. 

At Sutter Health, telehealth is utilized for family therapy sessions, and provides a way for #parents and guardians to visit their in-patient children, even when #pandemic restrictions prevented in-person visits. Crist said: 

“Some of the kids that we have are maybe nine years old, eight years old. That’s really young to be away from your #parents. In order to have connections [without in-person visits], … We also enable televisits so that they can see their #parents and interact as well.” 

Some areas of the state still lack telehealth services geared towards family #mentalhealth. One of CAMHD’s upcoming projects, said Shimabukuro, is “providing a form of family therapy via telehealth on Maui that doesn’t currently exist there.”

Addressing the need for more research

To develop the proper initiatives to address youth #mentalhealth, Gerald Busch, MD, a #psychiatrist at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children, said there need to be proper measures in place to identify the highest areas of need. He suggested that #schools and local communities put a higher emphasis on “digital epidemiology,” or the use of online public health surveys that assess how kids are feeling, #mentalhealth-wise. 

Integrating physical and #mentalhealth

Crist said there needs to be more resources for primary care #physicians to assess #mentalhealth alongside physical health. These consistent assessments could lead to better health outcomes, she said.

“[We should be] integrating funding, partnerships and technology to better equip our primary care #physicians, to help them flag potential red flags for #patients … Helping those primary care providers really have that support so that they can identify #patients earlier can actually prevent a lot of the severe #mentalillness.”

Building community resilience 

The most widely discussed issue among experts was the need to improve community resilience in the wake of major crises, such as the #pandemic. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this refers to “the ability of a community to use its assets to strengthen public health and healthcare systems and to improve the community’s physical, #behavioral, and social health to withstand, adapt to, and recover from adversity.”

Busch said strengthening community resilience is key in the case of future public crises. 

“The community is the basic unit of public health. Building community resilience — it’s very important … members of the community might have differences on various things, but at some point they realize that we’re all members of the same community. We have to work together to make our community work. In Hawaii, we have a lot of different kinds of community centers, and those serve as the basis for activities that build community resilience.”

According to Crist, even more needs to be done to improve community resilience for kids, including focusing services for pregnant people and young families. 

“Young families, young mothers, expecting mothers, all the way to when the child is five or so years of age. What are we doing to surround those families with wraparound support systems so that they are feeling supported — that there’s resiliency and that the child grows up and can develop proper resiliency? That is more of a public health concept, but if we were to collectively look at and put more emphasis on that, I think what would make a big difference.”

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#JamesDonaldson on #MentalHealth – A BRIGHTER DAY 30 ONLINE

James Donaldson is a NAMI – Seattle Board of Director Member

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

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#JamesDonaldson on #MentalHealth – A BRIGHTER DAY 15 ONLINE

James Donaldson is a Board of Director with NAMI – Seattle

#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

 

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#JamesDonaldson On #MentalHealth – #Suicide-Related Emergency Department Visits Increased Among #Youth During The #Pandemic

Heather R. Johnson

Hyponatremia at Hemodialysis Initiation Increases Death Risk
Although the number of ED visits was lower overall during the #COVID-19 #pandemic compared with the year prior, #suicide-related encounters among youth accounted for a larger percentage of overall youth ED visits during that time. 

The number of emergency department (ED) visits for #suicideattempts declined during the #COVID-19 #pandemic among young people aged 10 to 17 years, most likely due to shelter-in-place orders. However, more young #women, more young people with no #psychiatric history, and more young people with a #psychiatric diagnosis at the time of the ED visit presented with suicidal thoughts, according to the authors of a recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry.

While previous studies explored the association between #suicideattempts and #COVID-19, the authors of the current study believed the scientific community lacked evidence on diagnosis-based, population-level prevalence of #suicideattempts among youth during #COVID-19.

The retrospective, observational study was conducted at Kaiser Permanente Northern California. The researchers pulled electronic health record (EHR) data for youth aged 5 to 17 years old who sought emergency treatment for suicidal thoughts between January 1, 2020, and December 15, 2020. They compared that data to the same period in 2019. They found 2123 teens with #suicide-related encounters in 2020 and 2339 in 2019.Today’s top picks on the Haymarket Medical Network Is Having an Elevated Risk of #COVID-19 Complications a Disability? Exercise May Improve Child #MentalHealth During #Pandemic White House Announces Plan to Reduce Gun Suicides


#JamesDonaldson notes:

Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.

Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.

Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space.  #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle

CONTINUE READING

Although the number of ED visits year over year was lower overall, #suicide-related encounters among youth accounted for a larger percent of overall youth ED visits during the #COVID-19 #pandemic period compared with 2019. Relative to all #youth ED encounters, youth with no history of outpatient encounters associated with #mentalhealth or #suicide diagnoses during the 2 years prior were found to have a 129.4% higher risk of a #suicide-related ED encounter (95% CI, 41.0-217.8) during the fall of 2020 compared with the fall of 2019. The investigators excluded #patients without at least 1 year of continuous health insurance enrollment before their first ED visit.

The researchers note that using only data from the EHR limited the study, as it did not capture information about youth who visited non-Kaiser facilities or those who did not seek any care. Further research is needed to determine whether the results were dependent on the #pandemic or reflected trends overall.

“These results suggest that, despite reduced health care use in the early months of the

#COVID-19 #pandemic, ED use among #youth with suicidal thoughts or #behaviors returned to typical levels by summer 2020,” the researchers concluded. “The disproportionate increase during the summer and fall of 2020 among youth without prior documented #mentalhealth use and with comorbid psychiatric disorders may reflect higher suicidality among #youth without a previous #mentalhealth diagnosis, a shift in new #mentalhealth presentations from outpatient settings to the ED, or vulnerability among #youth with undocumented prior #mentalhealth diagnoses who were not currently engaged with the health care system and may have lost contact with other resources during the #pandemic.”

Reference

Ridout KK, Alavi M, Ridout SJ, et al. Emergency department encounters among #youth with suicidal thoughts or #behaviors during the #COVID-19 #pandemicJAMA Psychiatry. Published online September 1, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2021.2457

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