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31 Days of May – #MentalHealthMonth

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May is Mental Health Month and this is the time of year when the Department of Mental Health (DMH) observes and celebrates the importance of how much mental health matters to all of us. Each day in May, we will Tweet information, resources and events that promote good mental health and the fact that recovery is the new reality.

Since 1949, the nation has celebrated Mental Health Awareness Month in May, reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings. The observance was established by Mental Health America and for many years, DMH and the entire mental health community here in the Commonwealth have joined in to spread the word that mental health is something everyone should care about. Click here to learn about Mental Health Month events taking place in May across the state. Children’s Mental Health Week is May 3 through 9, check out the many events here throughout the month.

Why does mental health matter? According to Mental Health America, 1 in 5 American adults will have a diagnosable mental health condition in any given year. Fifty percent of us will meet the criteria for a diagnosable mental illness in our lifetime and half of that number will develop conditions by age 14.

There are risk factors such as genetics, biology, environment and lifestyle. And there are symptoms and warning signs. As it often happens, when someone first begins to experience symptoms, they may be ignored or brushed aside by family, friends and sometimes health care providers. Like any other health condition such as heart problems, diabetes or cancer, the symptoms of mental illness should not be ignored and can get worse if left untreated.

And here is the good news: mental health conditions are not only common, they are treatable, especially when caught early. Recovery from mental health conditions is real and happens every day.

While services provided by DMH are for those with the most serious mental health conditions, we encourage you to visit our website at www.mass.gov/dmh. You can learn more about what we do and you’ll find resources in your community.

Don’t miss a Mental Health Month Tweet; follow us @MassDMH. This is also a good time to sign up for DMH communications, news and information. You can do that by clicking HERE.

Please join us in remembering the many adults, children, adolescents and families who live with serious mental illness, yet are rising above and scaling the most insurmountable obstacles to live a life of hopes, dreams, dignity and respect.

Written By:


Director, Office of Communications and Community Engagement Massachusetts Department of Mental Health

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