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Mental Health Concerns
156
therefore, may experience symptoms that are new, or
more pronounced, during these years.
Like any illness, mental illnesses are easier to treat when
detected early. Sadly, many people do not get help until
their daily functioning is dramatically limited and some
do not seek treatment at all. Without treatment, the
consequences of these conditions for the individual and
society are staggering: unnecessary disability,
unemployment, substance abuse, homelessness,
inappropriate incarceration, suicide and wasted lives.
Early identification and treatment are essential;
ensuring access to the treatment and recovery supports
accelerates recovery and minimizes further harm.
The best treatments for these conditions are highly
effective; depending on the condition and the
treatment, between 70 and 90 percent of individuals
have significant reduction of symptoms and improved
quality of life.
Faculty can help to educate students about the
importance of early intervention and instill confidence
that such conditions are real and treatable.
Resources:
HALF OF US—Information and true stories from young
people facing distress and the stigma that comes with the
challenge of a mental illness,
halfofus.com
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI),
nami.org
National Institute of Mental Health,
nimh.nih.gov