Hello Friend

Awareness and Resources

How are we raising awareness and providing resources?

Stigma is one of the biggest issues in treating mental illness. Physical health problems are severe to the same extent as mental illness but people seek treatment for them regularly. With mental illness, cultural and societal perceptions make people less comfortable seeking help. The way to solve this is normalizing mental health issues.

Hello Friend MN aims to do this by promoting educational programs in schools, holding events about mental healthcare, and sharing the thoughts of those with firsthand experience with the effects of mental illness. You can read our interview with child psychiatrist, Dr. Aditi Garg, to see what we’ve done already.

Mental health disorders have a wide range

Mental health disorders as explained by the Mayo Clinic can include: “depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, eating disorders and addictive behaviors.”

This is different from more common mental health concerns that most suffer from in that there are “ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect your ability to function.”

Some stories that illustrate even mild mental health disorders: Becky WhitfieldJuan CeronOlachi Tiffany Etoh. Click to see more.

Mental health is a widespread problem, especially among teens

Approximately 20% of adolescents have a diagnosable mental health disorder.

Suicide is the third leading cause of death in adolescents and young adults

About 2 in 5 people who are incarcerated have a history of mental illness

Retrieved from http://www.simplicitymetrics.com/minnesotan-mental-health-services-infographic/

How COVID affected mental health?

COVID has created isolation, uncertainty, and widespread job loss. All of these take a toll of people’s mental health.

This has caused the rate of American adults with symptoms of anxiety or depressive disorder to quadruple

Luckily, it’s identifiable and treatable

Mental illness comes with a large list of typical physical symptoms including constant mood swings or big changes in eating habits

For a longer list of symptoms, go here. Having one or multiple symptoms doesn’t guarantee you or the person you know has mental illness but it is a good indicator.

We highly encourage you to learn more about what to do to seek treatment if you suspect someone you know or yourself is experiencing signs of mental illness

Based on the research done by NAMI, those who get treatment do better than 79% of those who don’t.

Providing Resources

At the end of the day, being able to access treatment and help for those with mental illness is what’s most important. Fortunately, schools, workplaces, and society in general provide access to many high quality, affordable mental health options. Hello Friend aims to connect those suffering to the option best for them as well as providing outlets for teens to meet others going through mental illness.

Luckily, there are a lot of easily available resources that you probably have access to and we can help you explore:

-Most workplaces offer access to the Employee Assistance Program, which gives free access to six counseling sessions per topic per year

-Most faith based organizations provide resources

-For teens and young adults in Minnesota specifically, we recommend the MyHealth clinic as a great resource to check out

-Shoot us an email. We can talk to trained professionals for some advice