By MEDCOM for STAND-TO!October 4, 2010
National Depression Awareness Month
What is it'
October is National Depression Awareness Month for the Army. On Oct. 7, 2010, organizations and communities across the U.S. will observe 'National Depression Screening Day' to bring national attention to depression; and educate people about its various signs and symptoms and the availability of free anonymous behavioral health screenings. The Army theme is "Depression is Treatable-Get Screened-Seek Care."
Why screen for depression'
Clinical depression is a serious medical condition that if left untreated, may lead to other complicated medical conditions. Depression signs and symptoms may include body aches and pain, sadness, irritability, changes in appetite or sleep, trouble concentrating or withdrawing from family, friends and activities you once enjoyed. A depression screening however, is often the first step to getting well. Unfortunately, two-thirds of people who suffer from depression fail to seek the care needed. They mistakenly believe their symptoms are just a normal part of life. The good news for people who suffer with depression is, more than 80 percent of all cases of clinical depression can be treated effectively with medication, psychotherapy or a combination of both.
What has the Army done'
For Soldiers, family members and Army civilians, anonymous depression screenings are available through the Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs and behavioral health agencies and resources in local communities. During the month of October, the Army encourages commanders and leaders to coordinate events locally with military and civilian behavioral health providers to educate Soldiers, family members and civilians on the signs and symptoms of depression and opportunities to be screened and referred for treatment by a primary care or behavioral health provider, if needed.
Why is depression education and awareness important to the Army'
The Army is committed to decreasing stigma for Soldiers, family members and civilians who seek behavioral health care. Depression, even the most severe cases, is a highly treatable disorder. As with any illness, the earlier the treatment begins, the more effective it is and the greater the likelihood the recurrence of depression can be prevented. If you or someone you know suffers from depression, help is available. Get screened-seek care.
Army Behavioral Health
Army Resilience Training
Comprehensive Soldier Fitness
Real Warriors Campaign
Veterans Affairs Mental Health Resources
U.S. Army Medical command