May is Mental Health Awareness Month and the theme of this year’s message is “Back to Basics.”  Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, millions of Americans were dealing with mental health conditions.  While generally, there has been an increase in cases of anxiety and depression over the past decade, during the last two years we have seen a spike in mental health crises. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 1 in 5 adults have experienced a mental illness (e.g., depression or anxiety), and 1 in 20 adults suffer from a serious mental health condition such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Florida, in particular, seems to be struggling with increases in mental health disorders and substance abuse.  In 2021, approximately 41% of adults in Florida reported symptoms of anxiety and/or depression.  Of those 41%, approximately 25% were unable to get the counseling or therapy they needed (NAMI, 2021).  In particular, children and young adults often don’t get the help they so desperately need.  Among those, ages 12-17, who reported depression, 64.2% did not receive any care or counseling.

If you or someone you know if dealing with a mental health condition, please remember that you are not alone.  Help is out there and there are resources available.  Below are some resources if you need to find help for yourself, a friend, or a family member.

National Alliance for Mental Illness


National Suicide Prevention Lifeline


Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)


If you need additional help or want to speak with a therapist, we hope you will contact Family & Child Development.