Mental health is an umbrella term that encompasses a person’s emotional, social, and psychological well-being and their ability to enjoy everyday life activities. Mental health affects every aspect of our lives. How we handle stress, respond to crises, maintain relationships with our family, friends, and co-workers, navigate work life, and even our physical well-being is largely influenced by how mentally healthy we are. In recent years, focusing on mental health has been much more top-of-mind for Americans and mental health stigma has been on the decline.
Unfortunately, mental health issues are not uncommon. An alarming number of people suffer from any number of mental health issues each year. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that 50% of all adults will suffer from a mental illness or disorder at some point throughout their life and that one in five adults are struggling with these health issues in any given year. The CDC also estimates that 1 in 25 Americans live with a very serious mental illness such as major depression or bipolar disorder.
These are staggering numbers and help to paint a picture of just how pervasive these health issues are. At the same time, these numbers can be reassuring to those who are struggling with mental health issues as they show that those individuals are not alone in their struggles.
It would be difficult to overstate the importance of mental health for both the individual and for society as a whole. In short, addressing mental health concerns puts individuals on firm footing in all aspects of their life and, as individuals are the building blocks for a community, help to form a strong society.
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) lays out very clearly how mental illness can impact the individual and the community:
Mental health is critically important due to how many aspects of an individual’s life it can impact. Sound mental health is the foundation for a healthy life.
Mental health awareness month happens each year in the month of May. The main goal of the month is to raise awareness not only of the prevalence of mental health issues in the world but also to help reduce the stigma that is associated with them. Many non-profit and non-governmental organizations turn their focus to making sure that anyone who is struggling with mental health issues is able to get the help that they need when they need it.
Medicare Part B (the portion of Medicare that governs medical insurance) does cover a variety of mental health services. These include services that fall under doctor’s visits and treatments that are performed outside of a hospital setting.
Per the Medicare website, these services include, but are not limited to:
Medical Part B may also cover partial hospital services and the following outpatient services:
Medicare can be a complex web of payment structures and this certainly applies to mental health services. Engaging a professional case manager is a good idea in order to learn how an individual’s specific situation is best handled.
The worldwide pandemic experienced over 2020 and 2021 is an unprecedented event for the vast majority of the world. In addition to the actual COVID-19 illness itself, the pandemic brought a host of challenging situations that had a negative impact on individual mental health.
Isolation and the disruption of the routine was a major factor that affected nearly everyone in the United States. As the pandemic ravaged its way across the country, state after the state instituted mandatory lock-downs forcing people to work from home and shelter in place. Separation from family and friends took its toll on mental health.
Additionally, the pandemic had significant impacts on the economy and saw job losses and layoffs in record numbers. This placed millions of Americans in financial distress which can be a leading factor in mental health.
Care for and cultivating mental health is a life-long process that requires focus and the desire to be an active participant in self-betterment. Obviously, there is a lot of variety and degrees to how severe each individual’s mental health diagnosis is but, regardless of how severe it may be, there are some common steps that can be taken toward achieving positive mental health.
Mental health organizations work with health professionals to provide a variety of services to local communities. These non-profit and charitable organizations play a large role in society’s effort to enrich individual lives through:
Mental health services help people live healthier and more fulfilling lives. There are a variety of services that are available to individuals depending on what their specific needs may be.
Mental health services can provide assistance with depression, stress, anxiety, interpersonal relationships, anger management, substance abuse, grief counseling, and much more. Depending on the severity or type of need in these areas, different types of counseling may be engaged.
Cultivating a strong mental health regime can be challenging. The past several decades have seen the emergence of mental case management services as a tool that non-profit and non-governmental agencies use to organize plans for their clients.
Case managers working in the mental health field are tasked with working to better the lives of their clients. Whether it is depression, anxiety, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder, or any other of a multitude of diagnoses, case managers guide and coach their clients in navigating not only their personal and professional lives but also the often murky waters of health care and health insurance.
The health care and health insurance landscape is challenging enough for those not battling a mental health crisis. For those who are struggling with mental health, some of the hurdles of getting the right help are simply insurmountable. Case managers are trained professionals who excel in guiding and organizing the path to wellness.
Mental health case managers caseloads find them working on a lot of different problems all at the same time. These case management professionals are trained to work on a variety of tasks and be ready to shuffle priorities as needed.
Some of the common tasks associated with this work include:
Sound mental health really is a key component to a healthier life. The good news is that over the years, we’ve seen positive trends in the resources available to help individuals with mental health and a decline in the stigma associated with mental health issues.
There are countless non-profit, charitable, and non-governmental organizations that exist for the express purpose of prioritizing the mental health of those who are in need. There are professionally trained case managers and mental health case management software platforms designed to develop a plan for success and see it through.
Mental health struggles are certainly intimidating but fortunately, resources for helping people achieve healthy and productive lives have never been more abundant.