Library Blog

May is National Mental Health Month

inner peace

During this health crisis, many are experiencing issues with isolation caused by social distancing.  The message to keep in mind is “You Are Not Alone.” Even in so-called ‘normal’ times, many of us experience anxiety and depression.  This month is a time to share your experiences and to support one another.  We need to continue the work of erasing the stigma attached to mental illness.  Plus, erasing the stigma attached to asking for help, whether that help includes medications, counseling, or a combination of the two.

In recent years, many celebrities have opened up about their struggles with various types of mental illness.  Some have opened up in interviews with magazines, and here are links to some of these articles from MasterFile Complete:

Many more are available online:

  • “’It’s Okay Not to Be Strong Sometimes:’ 52 Stars Who’ve Spoken Out About Their Struggles with Mental Health Issues: Janet Jackson, Ariana Grande, Camila Cabello and more stars have opened up — and inspired us in the process.” By Maria Yagoda

There are also many inspiring autobiographies:

  • Bailey, Lily. Because we are bad. A memoir on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
  • Franta, Connor. Note to Self. Dealing with clinical depression, social anxiety, and more.

The Library has recently added informational Mental Health links to our Health Resources page:

  • American Psychiatric Association
    Information for patients and families on common mental disorders and more.
  • American Psychological Association
    The Psychology Help Center is a consumer resource featuring information related to psychological issues affecting your daily physical and emotional well-being.
  • Mental Health.gov
    Provides one-stop access to U.S. government mental health and mental health problems information. “Let’s talk about it.”
  • Mental Health America
    The nation’s leading community-based nonprofit dedicated to addressing the needs of those living with mental illness and promoting the overall mental health of all Americans.
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness
    The nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.
  • National Institute of Mental Health
    The lead federal agency for research on mental disorders. “Transforming the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses.”
  • MedlinePlus: Mental Health
    Easy to understand information about mental health disorders.
  • CDC.gov: Mental Health
    Helpful information from the CDC regarding mental health.

There are Mental Health Apps available as well:

  • Calm – an app for meditation
  • Happify – an app to help overcome negative thoughts, stress and challenges
  • Headspace – for medication and sleep
  • Moodfit – an app to track and shape your moods
  • Pzizz – an app for relaxation and sleep

These are just a few.  Reviews of these and others are available at:

NOTE: Mental health apps can be great supplements to the behavioral health sessions you go to. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) are all good fits for mental health apps. These mental health apps are also companions that can be there for you anytime, day or night, when you’re feeling stressed out, isolated or vulnerable. Mental health apps are not meant to replace therapy, but rather to supplement it. (Source: Buckeye Recovery Network: Top 10 Best Mental Health Apps for 2020)

For those in emergency need of help, there are hotlines and textlines, such as:

  • Dial 211 to be connected to the Help Network of Northeast Ohio
  • Suicide Hotline: 330-747-2696
  • Warm Line: 1-866-303-7337
    A Peer-to-Peer service that specializes in helping individuals who are struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues or know of someone who just needs someone to talk to.

Sara Churchill is the Digital Services Librarian and Assistant Supervisor at Main-Information Services. Sara loves reading Science Fiction/Fantasy books, British cozy mysteries, True Crime and other true stories, plus a past reader of horror fiction by the likes of Stephen King and John Saul (among others). Also a big fan of Sci-fi, action, horror, spaghetti westerns, and based-on-a-true story movies. Her blogs are for adults and the entire family to enjoy reading and trying out the many online resources free for library cardholders to use.