From Despair to Hope: Changing the Consequences of Despair

As Mental Health Month winds down, it's clear that efforts to educate each other about the effects of mental illness must continue each and every day. Not just each May, but every day.

I recently read a blog post from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, or SAMHSA, that exemplifies the reasons why this is so important. The post highlighted a study that noted an uptick in deaths among people in certain groups - what they called "deaths of despair". These are deaths due to drug and alcohol overdoses, liver disease associated with chronic alcohol use, and suicide. We need to work with everyone, including community leaders and groups, to do this.

Read the blog post and think about ways you can help. There are lots of support groups and organizations that may need people to jump in and offer talents and skills. Dive in and help your neighbor, co-worker, even a loved one to recover and build lives anew!