Mental health and wellness include psychological, emotional, and social well-being. Mental wellness impacts students’ relationships with family, peers, and their school performance. It affects how we think, feel, and act. Mental health also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and the choices we make. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood. (mentalhealth.gov)
If you are dealing with a mental health condition, it’s important for you to know that you are not alone. People of all ages are dealing with anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, addictions, loneliness, and more. But there is help. There are many resources that you can contact to get the help you need:
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:
Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or Chat Online Now
- National Crisis Text Line:
Text “HOME” to 741741
- First Call for Help
211 Broward: Dial 2-1-1 from your phone
- Broward County Public Schools Mental Health Hotline: 754-321-HELP (4357)
- The Trevor Project (LGBTQ):
1-866-488-7386 OR Text “START” to 678678
- Nacional de Prevencion del Suicidio:
- Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 OR Text 838255
- Options for Deaf & Hard of Hearing:
- National Domestic Violence Hotline:
- Women in Distress 24 hours Crisis Hotline: 954-761-1133 (TTY/TDD 954-527-5385)
- Children’s Services Council – Mental Health Resources for Children and Families in Broward County
- Broward Behavioral Health: – Care for substance use, mental health, and co-occurring disorders for individuals in Broward County
- Handy: Life Skills, Education, and Support for kids removed from their homes due to domestic violence, substance abuse, physical/sexual abuse, & abandonment.
- Henderson Behavioral Health: Help for mental illness, eating disorders, substance abuse, and more.
- Hanley Foundation: Substance Abuse prevention and education
- Child Mind Institute – Information on mental conditions for Kids and Teens
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Managing Anxiety and Stress During COVID-19
- World Health Organization – Mental Health Considerations During COVID-19 Outbreak
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration – Disaster Distress Helpline
- National Domestic Violence Hotline – Staying Safe During COVID-19
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) – Information and Resources COVID-19
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) – Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health – Tips for Social Distancing
- American Foundation for Suicide Prevention – Taking Care of Your Mental Health in the Face of Uncertainty
- American Psychiatric Association – Information of different mental health conditions, symptoms, and treatment from the most recent DSM-5.
Mindfulness is the ability to notice what’s happening right now, and not get overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. It’s not about stopping all negative thoughts always, because that’s not realistic. It’s about knowing that we can acknowledge those thoughts, and then release them. They don’t control us or define us. We have the power over how much we want to focus on a thought or event. We can make a choice not to worry about yesterday or tomorrow, and to be happier and healthier. Mindfulness based stress reduction (MBSR) is a great tool to learn when we’re young so that we can use the techniques whenever we need them throughout our lives. (Adam Avin )
- Mindful tools for Teens: A blog about some mindful practices that teens can try to help be in the present moment.
- Connection Coalition: Evidence based mind body practices.
- Heal The Planet: Information about sustainability and nutrition in broward county
- Wuf Shanti Children’s Wellness Foundation: Mindfulness and SEL for Kids K-12
- Inner Explorer: Mindful meditations for kids and teens
- Mindful Kids Peace Summit: Online video library for teens about mindful topics
- Stressed Teens: Videos and practices for self-care and compassion for teens
- Yoga International: Videos and practices for yoga and meditation for teens
- Mindful Videos and Interviews with Experts: Wuf Shanti video excerpts on mindful topics, practices, and demos
- Public Service Announcements for Teens about Mindfulness, Communication, Diversity, Inclusion, Compassion, Empathy, and so much more.
- Center for Mind Body Medicine: Trauma-informed mindfulness
Kids Association for Mindfulness in Education – Youth come together to mindfully do good in the world, and help get mindful programs into schools.
TED TALK on Mindfulness:
TEDxYouth@KC Talk about getting mindful and social emotional learning programs into our education system, why mental health education is so important to stopping the violence, and using our voice to make a positive difference in the world.
Social Emotional Learning (SEL)
Social emotional learning (SEL) is the process of developing the self-awareness, self-regulation, and interpersonal skills that are necessary and so important in life. It’s about coping with stress and emotions, self-compassion, and resilience…All of which are empowering because no one controls them other than you. It’s also about communication, interacting with others, and collaboration, which are all so important. Mindfulness-based social emotional learning (MBSEL) is considered ‘next-generation SEL’ because it addresses the roots of under-performance and ‘diseases of despair’ (depression, violence, addiction, suicide, self-harm) by significantly reducing stress and priming the intellect for learning.
Whether due to mobile phones, social media, video games, or culture, there is a mental health crisis in our country. There is more bullying (1 in 5 kids), isolation, suicide, and homicide in minors under 18 than ever before. Kids in middle and high school spend 8 hours in front of media every day, which may lend towards increased aggressiveness, desensitization, and lower self-esteem. We need to relearn how to communicate with each other, respect and appreciate differences, and be kind to themselves and each other. MBSEL can help.
- Collaborative for Academic, Social, Emotional Learning (CASEL): SEL Research and Guided Practice
- Six Seconds: Information on Emotional Intelligence (EI)
- Power of Positivity: Positive News Threads and Information
- Project Happiness: Positive Psychology and Happiness Habita
- Mindful Kids Peace Summit: Online video library for teens about SEL topics
- Mindbe Education: MBSEL trainings, curriculum, and programs
- Greater Good at UC Berkeley: Science based insights for a meaningful life
- Confident Parents Confident Kids: An SEL blog
Stress Reduction Techniques
- Take a break! Breathe.
- Move! Get outdoors.
- Nourish yourself! Eat Healthy.
- Relax! Make time to unwind. Listen to Music.
- Stay in touch! Connect with others.
- Ask for help! You are loved.
To learn more: United Way of Broward County
Self-care strategies are good for your mental and physical health and can help you take charge of your life. Take care of your body and your mind and connect with others to benefit your mental health.
Take Care of Your Body.
Be mindful about your physical health:
- Get enough sleep. At least 8-10 hours.
- Exercise. At least three times a week. Sports count.
- Balanced Diet. Add some healthy foods.
- Avoid tobacco, alcohol, vaping and drugs. Say No.
- Limit screen time. Look Up.
- Relax and recharge. Even a few minutes every day of Yoga, Meditation, Breathing, Mindfulness, Affirmations will help.
Build support and strengthen relationships:
- Make connections. Join a support group.
- Do something for others. It will come back to you.
- Support a family member or friend. Make a positive difference in someone’s life.
For more information go to: Mayo Clinic