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Giving Back to Those Who Give So Much

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As we celebrate National Military Families Appreciation Month and Veterans Day this November, Americans will honor and recognize the countless men and women who have sacrificed so much for our military and nation. While we honor their service, this is a good time to learn more about the silent scourge of psychological and mental challenges many veterans face daily. A Mental Health Crisis Veterans and their families face a unique and continuing mental health crisis. According to the National Alliance on Mental Health, veterans face three primary mental health concerns: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Depression Traumatic brain injury (TBI) While anyone can suffer from these conditions, veterans are exposed to them far more frequently than civilians. Roughly one in nine…

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National Gratitude Month 2021: Why focusing on the positive helps improve physical and mental well-being

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Gratitude’s amazing powers can shift us from focusing on the negative to appreciating what is positive in our lives. Taking the time to remember all the things to be thankful for—especially during the pandemic—that simple act of gratitude, of appreciating the good in our lives, and those around us, can help improve physical, emotional, and mental health. And with November being #NationalGratitudeMonth, it is a nice reminder that the simple act of taking the time to be thankful can help improve our lives. The quality of being thankful improves physical and mental well-being. “Gratitude erases negativity. Every time you think “this isn’t my day,” stop for a second,  and start going over in your mind everything you have to be grateful…

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Beacon supports NLGA’s efforts to better prevent suicide and care for people in mental health crisis

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Wendy Martinez Farmer, Beacon Crisis Leader Nine years ago, I was driving home through Atlanta rush hour concerned I would not make it in time to pick up my 2-year-old from daycare. Traffic was heavy and I was already running late after handling a crisis at work. Suddenly, I started experiencing crushing chest pain that radiated down both arms and up into my jaw. Without much conscious thought, I pulled off the highway, turned into a convenience store, bought an aspirin, chewed it and looked at the store clerk and said “please call 911, I am having a heart attack.” Within seconds, bystanders who also seemed instinctively to know what to do stepped in to keep me calm and even contacted…

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A time to reflect on suicide prevention

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Trigger Warning: The below blog post is focused on suicide prevention, suicide, and mental healthcare We know from our State of the Nation’s Mental Health Report that in spite of Americans’ increased emotional distress resulting from the pandemic, there is a disconnect between this escalated distress and a flat rate of diagnosis in 2020. Suicide can be the result of an untreated mental health condition. One in four young adults globally are estimated to be experiencing depression in 2020 and 2021, according to a global study published in JAMA. We believe mental health is health. Physical and mental health are linked and must be addressed equally and in tandem for overall, whole-person health. It is critical that anyone thinking about…

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Tips on how to be an ally to the LGBTQ+ community

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June’s history as Pride Month spans three presidential administrations, and its evolving official title reflects society’s developing views towards the LGBTQ+ community.

In 1999, President Bill Clinton first declared June as Gay and Lesbian Pride Month, and later, President Barack Obama changed the title to be more inclusive, naming June as LGBT Pride Month. This year, President Joe Biden has extended the reach even further by declaring June as LGBTQ+ Pride Month.

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COVID-19, behavioral health, and an alarming rise in suicides

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Medical Director Dr. Jessica Chaudhary discusses the connection between COVID-19 and rising suicide rates and what can be done about it.

She also discusses how the pandemic has highlighted the importance of behavioral health to whole-person health.

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Compassionately and effectively responding to behavioral health crisis

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In the last video of our series, Beacon Health Options’ Crisis Solutions Leader Wendy Farmer discusses how behavioral health crises are currently addressed.

She also provides innovative solutions on how we can improve our behavioral health crisis systems.

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Mental health professionals: Remember to take care of yourself

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The stress frontline healthcare workers experienced during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond has been well documented.

However, less well-known is the effect the pandemic is having on a different group of frontline healthcare workers: mental health professionals.

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When substance use and pregnancy collide

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Our third video during May as Mental Health Awareness Month highlights Beacon’s VP Medical Director Dr. Sandrine Pirard.

She discusses the prevalence of substance use disorders in pregnant and postpartum women and what can be done about it.

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Reducing health disparities through culturally competent care

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Beacon’s Associate Director of Behavioral Health Services Dr. Charma Dudley discusses the ways in which disparities in access, awareness and treatment affect behavioral health outcomes for diverse populations.

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