Which is More Likely?

a) Winning the lottery

b) Being on Jeopardy

c) Being struck by lightning

d) Having a mental health illness

Here are the FACTS

a) Your chance of winning the lottery on a single ticket is one in 175 million.

b) Of the approximately 100,000 people that take the online test per year, 400 are chosen from 2000-3000 live auditions = .4%

c) Your odds of being struck by lightning this year are1 in 960,000.

d) The correct answer Each year, 1 in 5 Americans will experience a diagnosable mental health condition. Mental illnesses are more common than cancer, diabetes, or heart disease (U.S. Surgeon General's Report)

May is Mental Health Awareness Month to raise awareness, educate communities, and reduce stigma. It calls attention to the importance of addressing mental health symptoms early, identifying potential underlying diseases, and planning an appropriate course of action on a path towards overall health. These issues are important to address year-round, but highlighting these issue during May provides a time for people to come together.

When we think about cancer, heart disease, or diabetes, we generally don't wait years to treat these conditions. Experiencing symptoms such as loss of sleep, feeling anxious, hearing voices, feeling sad for no reason, shouldn't be ignored, or brushed aside in the hopes that they go away. Like other disease, mental illnesses are common and treatable. Some people view the need to seek help as weakness, but really, seeking help is a sign of strength. Help-seeking is a sign of positive coping and self-improvement.

Ohioans may access a variety of free, online screening tools available at: http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/mental-health-screening-tools to determine if it's time to seek professional help. If a potential illness is indicated, there are several easily accessible providers within our community.

Southeast Inc. (740) 695-9344 or 24 Emergency Services 1-800-354-HELP

Tri County Help Center (740) 695-5441

The Village Network (740) 526-0204

If you are looking for help regarding substance abuse or addiction,

Crossroads Counseling Services (740) 695-9447

Throughout Ohio, individuals can text the keyword "4hope" to 741 741 to be connected to a Crisis Counselor. Additional resources can be found at www.bhmboard.org.