Behavioral/ Mental Health

Mental/behavioral health has been a priority of NCHD’s 2013 and 2019 Public Health Improvement Plans.  The overarching goal is to build a system of care that supports prevention through the identification and implementation of evidence-based practices and programs addressing identified and emerging healthcare issues. 

 

We are currently focusing on the behavioral/mental health of our communities through a three-pronged approach; Suicide Prevention, Man Therapy, and Pregnancy-related Depression.

 

Suicide Prevention

According to the NCHD's 2012 Community Health Survey, 70% of adults 18 and over were at least slightly concerned about the mental illness or emotional issues in their community.  In 2019, suicide remained the seventh leading cause of death for all Coloradans. Adults ages 25-64 continue to have the highest rates and number of suicide deaths, representing nearly 70% of all suicide fatalities. 
Source: Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention
 
 

Common Risk Factors for Suicide include:

  • Family history of suicide

  • Family history of child maltreatment

  • Previous suicide attempt(s)

  • History of mental disorders, particularly clinical depression

  • History of alcohol and substance abuse

  • Feelings of hopelessness

  • Impulsive or aggressive tendencies

  • Cultural and religious beliefs (e.g., belief that suicide is noble resolution of a personal dilemma)

  • Local epidemics of suicide

  • Isolation, a feeling of being cut off from other people

  • Barriers to accessing mental health treatment

  • Loss (relational, social, work, or financial)

  • Physical illness

  • Easy access to lethal methods

  • Unwillingness to seek help because of the stigma attached to mental health and substance abuse disorders or to suicidal thoughts

A common response to suicide is to oversimplify the cause of the suicide.  Usually suicide is more complex. Our culture is often uncomfortable talking about suicide. 

 

Some factors that protect individuals from suicidal thoughts and actions are:

  • Effective clinical care for mental, physical, and substance abuse disorders

  • Easy access to a variety of clinical interventions and support for help seeking

  • Family and community support (connectedness)

  • Support from ongoing medical and mental health care relationships

  • Skills in problem solving, conflict resolution, and nonviolent ways of handling disputes

  • Cultural and religious beliefs that discourage suicide and support instincts for self-preservation

Crisis can appear under many disguises. Some common ones include relationship problems, depression, anxiety, bullying, substance abuse, and suicidal thoughts. If you or a loved one are navigating any of these or other challenges, it may be time to find someone to talk to, 24/7/365 mental health and addiction services are available at 844-493-TALK (8255) or you can walk into any crisis center during business hours: 

 

871 East 1st Street, Akron 970-345-2254

821 East Railroad Ave, Fort Morgan 970-867-4924

115 North Campbell, Holyoke 970-854-2114

118 West 3rd Street, Julesburg 970-474-3769

211 West Main St, Sterling 970-522-4392

215 South Ash St, Yuma 970-848-5418

365 West 2nd, Wray 970-332-3133

 

 

The Northeast Colorado Health Department  in partnership with Centennial Mental Health Center will provide community outreach and evidence-based suicide prevention training opportunities to the communities of northeast Colorado.  Trainings opportunities are available for all community members several times throughout the year.  These include Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) for Adults, Teens or Youth, Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), More Than Sad, and several others. 

For more information or to sign up contact: 

Maranda Miller

970-522-4549 ext. 293

MarandaM@CentennialMHC.org

In the event of a life-threatening mental health emergency, call 9-1-1 or get to the nearest emergency room.

Life Source

The LifeSource program provides professional mental health therapy for youth at risk of suicide in the Counties of Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington, Yuma, Cheyenne, Kit Carson and Lincoln.  The goal of this grant funded program is to decrease youth suicides by removing the financial and social barriers to treatment. 

Who is eligible?

Individuals that are 19 years and younger whose families are uninsured or underinsured and cannot pay for their children to get the help they need.

How to access LifeSource?

Referrals are made through school counselors,

faith-based counselors, another concerned adult or may be self-referred. All referrals are confidential. 

 

 

Youth and their families have the opportunity to select, speak and share with a mental health professional for up to 6 sessions. 

LIFE SOURCE MENTAL HEALTH PROVDERS

 

The teenage years are when people begin to form strong bonds with those outside the family.  The most important part of preventing suicide is communication.  People have to have hard conversations and someone has to listen.  Teens need to be able to talk to adults they can trust and that doesn’t have to be a parent.  Teens often turn to mentors or other adults in leadership roles.  It is important that youth have at least one trusted adult in their life.  Emotions are part of being human and it is vital that youth be allowed to experience emotions and not bottle them up. 

In Colorado, suicide was the leading cause of death among youth ages 10-18 between 2013 and 2017.  Between 2013 and 2017, 31.6% of youth who died by suicide were female and 68.4% were male as reported on the death certificate.

Source: Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention

 

What parents/caregivers and other trusted adults can do:

  • Learn how to identify kids who are at risk

  • Educate yourself and other trusted adults on suicide prevention

  • Have those hard conversations

  • Secure Firearms

  • Secure prescription medications

 

Myth:  Talking about suicide can plant the seed of “suicide ideation”.  Suicide is an original idea and it is not planted there just by talking about it. 

 

Factors that may contribute to teen suicide include:

  • Violence in the home

  • Inability to find success at school

  • Feelings of worthlessness

  • Divorce of parents

  • Rejection by friends or peers

  • Substance abuse

  • Death of someone close to the teenager

  • The suicide of a friend or someone he/she “knows” online

  • Victim of bullying and/or cyber-bullying

  • Overachieving youth who have a fear of failure

 

Signs that a teenager may be thinking about attempting suicide:

  • Talks about death and/or suicide (maybe even with a joking manner)

  • Plans ways to kill himself/herself

  • Expresses worries that nobody cares about him/her

  • Has attempted suicide in the past

  • Dramatic changes in personality and behavior

  • Withdraws from interacting with friends and family

  • Shows signs of depression

  • Shows signs of a substance abuse problem

  • Begins to act recklessly and engage in risk-taking behaviors

  • Begins to give away sentimental possessions

  • Spends time online interacting with people who glamorize suicide and maybe even form suicide pacts

 

The LifeSource Project Direct Line 970-520-5207

 

Colorado Crisis Services 844-493-TALK (8255) or Text TALK to 38255 (a personal, confidential text support line)

www.ColoradoCrisisServices.org

 

If you have an urgent concern about you or a friend’s safety, report it to Safe2Tell.  They are available 24/7 for you to anonymously report your safety concerns at http://safe2tellco.org, 1-877-542-7233 or download their free app.

 

Man Therapy

Working aged men (25-54 years old) account for the largest number of suicide deaths in U.S.  According to the Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention, males continue to represent a disproportionate number of suicide deaths at over 76% of suicide fatalities across all age groups.  Men are the least likely to receive any kind of support. They generally don't talk about it with their friends, family, or seek professional treatment. 

 

Man Therapy is a tool designed by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE)  to help men with their mental health and rid us of the notion that men should not have or talk about their feelings. The more you tell Dr. Rich Mahogany about what you’re up against, the more he can cater the content to your situation. Visit mantherapy.org to learn more, carry on!

 

Pregnancy- Related Depression

According to Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) data, the Northeast Colorado region has a higher rate of women who experience signs and symptoms of depression and a lower percentage of health care providers who talk with women about what to do when feeling depressed during pregnancy or after delivery. NCHD has coordinated an initiative to raise public awareness of the symptoms, risk factor and stigma associated with pregnancy-related depression as well as train and support healthcare providers to screen women for depression and refer for treatment. 

 

Some signs and symptoms of Pregnancy-Related Depression are:

  • Feeling very sad, anxious, cranky or totally overwhelmed

  • Crying a lot or feeling hopeless

  • Not caring for yourself (not eating, getting dressed or bathing)

  • Not wanting to see your family and friends

  • Feeling that your baby would be better off without you

The birth of a baby can be a time of great joy; however, many women find themselves feeling overwhelmed and may even have negative feelings toward their child which can make them feel confused and guilty. Many new mothers are ashamed to admit negative feelings and suffer in silence because of the fear of being a “bad mother.” One in seven women experiences pregnancy-related depression or anxiety during pregnancy or postpartum.

 

YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

Depression is the most common complication of pregnancy. The good news is that it can be treated. If you are experiencing pregnancy-related depression, it is important to remember you are not alone and your feelings are nothing to be ashamed of.  For  help or more information on pregnancy-related depression call you healthcare provider or 1-800-944-4773 or visit www.postpartum.net. If you have thoughts of hurting yourself or your baby, find health right away, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room.

 

As many as 80% of new mothers have the baby blues.  Signs include crying, mood swings, having a short temper or being very sensitive.  The baby blues go away without special treatment, usually within 10 days after giving birth.  When these feelings linger or get worse, you may have pregnancy-related depression.  

What to do when you feel blue:

  • Connect with your loved ones

    • Talk to a supportive person and express your feelings, positive and negative

  • Eat Right!

    • At least three healthy meals every day

  • Get Fit!

    • Take your baby for a walk

  • RELAX!

    • Get rest while the baby is resting

  • Schedule Fun!

    • Contact hospital, library or community center to find activities for parents and children

If you are a friend or family member of a pregnant woman or new mother whom you suspect is suffering from depression:

  • You should listen to her and take her concerns seriously

  • Once the baby has arrived, help her with the child and household tasks. She needs sleep and some time for herself.

  • Encourage her to seek help from a healthcare professional, and help her to find one.

  • once she has found treatment follow up with her to ensure it is effective.

It is important that pregnant women and new mothers know if they are suffering from depression because it can be detrimental to her health as well as the health of the baby.

For more information on any of the services on this page, please contact
 
Sherri Yahn
(970) 522-3741 x 1242
sherriy@nchd.org
 

NCHD District Headquarters

700 Columbine Street

Sterling, Co 80751

 

Call us:

1-877-795-0646

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