Mental Health First Aid
You may know CPR and the Heimlich maneuver. You can call 911. But can you administer First Aid in a mental health crisis? It’s easy to tell when someone might be suffering from a heart attack, is choking, or is unable to breathe. But what does depression look like? Or anxiety? Have you met people experiencing suicidal thoughts or behaviors?
You are more likely to encounter a person in an emotional or mental crisis than someone having a heart attack. Mental disorders are more common than heart disease and cancer combined.
The stigma surrounding mental illness often prevents people from seeking help or even acknowledging that they need help. And if they do want help, they don’t know where to turn. Mental Health First Aid equips the public to help persons with mental illness get the help they need.
Mental Health First Aid is a highly interactive, 12-hour program taught over several days or weeks to small groups.
You will learn:
- The prevalence of mental illnesses in the U.S. and their emotional and economic cost.
- The potential warning signs and risk factors for depression, anxiety disorders, trauma, psychotic disorders, eating disorders, and substance use disorders.
- A 5-step action plan to help an individual in crisis connect to professional care.
- Resources available to help someone with a mental health problem.
Mental Health First Aid has been rigorously evaluated and is proven to reduce stigma connected to mental illnesses. This program can reduce the damaging effects of mental and emotional disorders such as job loss, school dropouts, relationship issues, and drug and alcohol problems.
Who Can Be a Mental Health First Aider?
- Educators/School Administrators
- College/University Leaders
- Human Resources Professionals
- Members of Faith Communities
- Homeless Shelter Staff and Volunteers
- Nurses/Physician Assistants/Primary Care Workers
- Police/First Responders/Security Personnel
- Mental Health Authorities
- Substance Abuse Professionals
- Social Workers
- Consumers and Family Members
- Caring Citizens
If you have questions about the program and would like to learn more, please call (503) 722-6200 and ask about Mental Health First Aid.