What to Know About Mental Health Awareness Day

It’s Mental Health Awareness Day, an annual awareness event dedicated to spreading the word about the importance of mental health — and celebrating all of the progress that we’ve made so far!

As part of Mental Illness Awareness Week, Mental Health Awareness Day is held every year on October 10 and is an opportunity for all of us to check in with both ourselves and the people we love, as well as to show support for those in our lives who may be coping with a mental health condition.

Nearly one in five adults in the U.S. are living with a mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. So this Mental Health Week — and especially today — commit to learning more about mental illness, including what it looks like and why it’s important to keep an open mind.

To get you started, we’ve put together this quick guide to Mental Health Awareness Day and what you can do to honor it.

What is Mental Health Awareness Day?

Also known as World Mental Health Day, this day caps off Mental Health Week and is dedicated to raising awareness about mental health and lending support to those with a mental disorder.

Like many other health conditions, many people struggle with mental health year-round, yet mental health does not get the level of worldwide acknowledgement it deserves. By setting aside a day to highlight it, we take ourselves one crucial step closer to reducing the stigma surrounding mental health diagnoses and care and making the world a better place for the millions of people who have experienced or will experience poor mental health.

What Does the Green Ribbon Stand For?

The green ribbon is an international symbol for mental health awareness. Consider wearing one to show support for those with mental illness, to acknowledge your own experience with mental illness, or to honor a loved one who has struggled with their mental health.

How to Celebrate Mental Health Day

There are so many fantastic ways to show your support this Mental Health Day and beyond! Here are some great places to start.

Educate yourself. Awareness starts with ourselves. Consider reading an article or book on a mental health topic, or looking up some statistics about mental health in the U.S. or around the globe. The more you know, the more that you’ll be able to educate others.

Prioritize your own mental health. Even if you don’t suffer from a mental illness you should always put your mental health front and center. Say “yes” to self-care today and engage in something that makes you feel good and peaceful.

Show support for those with a mental health condition. Show up for other people in your life, especially those who may be coping with mental health issues. Even a quick text to check in can go a long way.

Share your story. Help reduce the stigma around mental health by being open about your experience with others. If you’re not comfortable doing this, you could also share some general information about mental health on your social media page, such as an article or infographic.

October Events for Mental Health

October is full of mental health events. Here are two that you might want to join in on today or at some other point this month.

  1. Social Media Events

Add your voice to the conversation around mental health on social media by participating in hashtags like #MentalIllnessAwarenessWeek and #MIAW. You’ll be able to engage with a large community of individuals who are sharing their experiences to help raise awareness and get the word out to more people.

  1. Watch Videos

The National Alliance on Mental Health has lots of great videos created just for mental health awareness. Take a look as a fast way to educate yourself — and to pass that education on to others.

If you or someone who you love is struggling with mental health, it’s important to know that you are not alone. Please reach out to us today for support and information on what types of treatments are available.