You’re part of a movement where every minute EveryDayMatters. You are involved in a community that takes action every day. To reach the goals of recovery and healthy lives, EveryDay matters. EveryDayMatters is not just a mantra; it’s a movement. And, you’re part of it. Now, you can connect with others, who are also part of this movement, through EveryDayMatters.com -- a website for those who are cause-connected, passionate and vision driven about health and human services issues in the health and human services community. Clinicians, practitioners, consumers and vendors in health and human services organizations, as well as industry vendors, are encouraged to share stories that celebrate successes and debunk myths about health and human services issues. Our hope is you will be inspired and enlightened, ask questions, share opinions, eliminate barriers and celebrate successes.

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The death toll from overdoses of prescription painkillers has more than tripled in the past decade, according to an analysis in the CDC Vital Signs report released from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This new finding shows that more than 40 people die every day from overdoses involving narcotic pain relievers like hydrocodone (Vicodin), methadone, oxycodone (OxyContin), and oxymorphone (Opana).

“Overdoses involving prescription painkillers are at epidemic levels and now kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined,” said CDC Director Thomas Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “States, health insurers, health care providers and individuals have critical roles to play in the national effort to stop this epidemic of overdoses while we protect patients who need prescriptions to control pain.”

All of us have a role to play. Parents and grandparents should take time to properly dispose of any unneeded or expired medications from the home and to talk to their kids about the misuse and abuse of prescription drugs.

  September Mental and Behavioral Health Upcoming Events

September 1 – 30, 2014
Recovery Month – Recovery Month aims to promote the societal benefits of alcohol and drug use disorder treatment, laud the contributions of treatment providers, and promote the message that recovery from alcohol and drug disorders in all its forms is possible. Organized by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

September 7 – 13, 2014
National Suicide Prevention Week – Suicide prevention is everyone’s business and anyone can participate in National Suicide Prevention Week. Suicide and suicidal behavior affects individuals of all ages, genders, races and religions across the planet. Mental illness, substance abuse, previous suicide attempts, hopelessness, access to lethal means, recent loss of loved ones, unemployment and vulnerability to self-harm are just a few examples of risk factors. High self-esteem, social connectedness, problem-solving skills, supportive family and friends are all examples of factors that buffer against suicide and suicidal behaviors. Organized by American Association of Suicidology.

September 10, 2014
World Suicide Prevention Day – We believe that through a combined effort at an international and local level, a difference to the lives of many will be made. Suicide Can be Prevented. Successful approaches to suicide prevention have includes: restricting access to means; establishing community prevention programs; establishing guidelines for media reporting; and engaging with frontline professionals through gate keeper training programs Organized by International Association for Suicide Prevention.


   
   

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Supporting Children’s Mental Health:
Tips for Parents and Educators

NASP Resources

Young children’s mental health provides an essential foundation for early learning and development. In the early years, children’s mental health can be seen in a wide range of behaviors that promote engagement in social relationships and learning. Here's are some tips recognize and nurture this process.

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Create a sense of belonging – Feeling connected and welcomed is essential to children’s positive adjustment, self-identification, and sense of trust in others and themselves. Building strong, positive relationships among students, school staff, and parents is important to promoting mental wellness.

Promote resilience – Adversity is a natural part of life and being resilient is important to overcoming challenges and good mental health. Connectedness, competency, helping others, and successfully facing difficult situations can foster resilience.

Develop competencies – Children need to know that they can overcome challenges and accomplish goals through their actions. Achieving academic success and developing individual talents and interests helps children feel competent and more able to deal with stress positively. Social competency is also important. Having friends and staying connected to friends and loved ones can enhance mental wellness.

Ensure a positive, safe school environment – Feeling safe is critical to students’ learning and mental health. Promote positive behaviors such as respect, responsibility, and kindness. Prevent negative behaviors such as bullying and harassment. Provide easily understood rules of conduct and fair discipline practices and ensure an adult presence in common areas, such as hallways, cafeterias, locker rooms, and playgrounds. Teach children to work together to stand up to a bully, encourage them to reach out to lonely or excluded peers, celebrate acts of kindness, and reinforce the availability of adult support.

Teach and reinforce positive behaviors and decision making – Provide consistent expectations and support. Teaching children social skills, problem solving, and conflict resolution supports good mental health. “Catch” them being successful. Positive feedback validates and reinforces behaviors or accomplishments that are valued by others.

Encourage helping others – Children need to know that they can make a difference. Pro-social behaviors build self-esteem, foster connectedness, reinforce personal responsibility, and present opportunities for positive recognition. Helping others and getting involved in reinforces being part of the community.

Encourage good physical health – Good physical health supports good mental health. Healthy eating habits, regular exercise and adequate sleep protect kids against the stress of tough situations. Regular exercise also decreases negative emotions such as anxiety, anger, and depression.

Educate staff, parents and students on symptoms of and help for mental health problems – Information helps break down the stigma surrounding mental health and enables adults and students recognize when to seek help. School mental health professionals can provide useful information on symptoms of problems like depression or suicide risk. These can include a change in habits, withdrawal, decreased social and academic functioning, erratic or changed behavior, and increased physical complaints.

Ensure access to school-based mental health supports – School psychologists, counselors, and social workers can provide a continuum of mental health services for students ranging from universal mental wellness promotion and behavior supports to staff and parent training, identification and assessment, early interventions, individual and group counseling, crisis intervention, and referral for community services.

Provide a continuum of mental health services – School mental health services are part of a continuum of mental health care for children and youth. Build relationships with community mental health resources. Be able to provide names and numbers to parents.

Establish a crisis response team – Being prepared to respond to a crisis is important to safeguarding students’ physical and mental well-being. School crisis teams should include relevant administrators, security personnel and mental health professionals who collaborate with community resources. In addition to safety, the team provides mental health prevention, intervention, and postvention services.









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