Mental Health Scares Me: Coping with a Mental Health Diagnosis

Liliana Barron

Mar 9, 2022

This may be your first time seeking mental health services and you may have mixed feelings and thoughts about taking the first step. My hope as you read this blog post is that you tune into the side of you that deserves to grab on to resources as needed vs. the side of you that sits in fear, shuts down, and moves through life with increased difficulties and challenges. You do not have to have things figured out before consulting with a mental health care provider.

woman in sunlight

First and foremost, I want to review some mental health facts that can help you put things into perspective: 

Fact: 43.8 million adults experience mental illness in a given year.

Fact: Nearly 60% of adults with a mental illness didn’t receive mental health services in the previous year.

Fact: Nearly 50% of youth aged 8-15 didn’t receive mental health services in the previous year.

Fact: African American & Hispanic Americans used mental health services at about ½ the rate of whites in the past year and Asian Americans at about 1/3 the rate.

Fact: Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and is a major contributor to the global burden of disease.

Fact: Serious mental illness costs America $193.2 billion in lost earning every year.

In summary a lot of adults and youth are needing mental health services and need to be diagnosed but aren’t due to fear of the unknown, minimizing symptoms, neglecting self-care, stigma of receiving a diagnosis/seeking mental health services, etc. In addition, you are not alone in the mixed feelings that may come up with receiving a mental health diagnosis. You may feel relief, hope, fear, shock, shame, etc. but your mental health provider will guide you through the process and will help you address your challenges as well as help you identify your strengths, resilience, and will equip you with additional positive coping skills and resources as needed. 

Lastly, a mental health diagnosis is created to assist you and your provider to identify the problem as well as guide you both to develop an appropriate treatment plan that best addresses your mental health concerns. You are not your diagnosis-you are a person who has a mental health illness and you are brave enough to seek help, just as you would seek help for a physical illness. Mental health and implications CAN be scary when you don’t address it and when it negatively overpowers every major area of your life such as family, friendships, interests, school, work, etc. 

 

Resources: www.NAMI.org

Written by:

Liliana Barron

LPC, NCC, M.S.

Mar 9, 2022

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