Today is National Depression Screeing Day

Posted: October 9th, 2014

National Depression Screening Day has been taking place since 1991 and is designed to screen those who may be suffering from depression but not know it. Participants fill out an anonymous questionnaire and, depending on their answers, are referred to mental health professionals for follow-up.

The screenings are given at colleges, workplaces, community-based organizations and military installations and will be available on line at the organization’s special web site, www.HelpYourselfHelpOthers.org. The website also lists local sites where screenings will be given.

A study done in 2009 showed that depression screenings are effective in connecting at-risk individuals with treatment. It showed that 55 percent of those who completed the screening online and who agreed to take part in a follow-up survey sought depression treatment within three months.

While McLean has held screening events in the past, this is the first time the hospital will be co-sponsoring the national event and will publicizing it via social media, including Facebook and Twitter.

The questionnaire allows individuals to screen themselves, in an anonymous way, for mood and anxiety disorders, eating disorders and alcohol use disorders. The online screenings provide an assessment of the user’s mental health, information on whether the user’s results are consistent with a mental health disorder, an overview of signs and symptoms of treatable disorders and help getting access to local treatment options.

More than 700 colleges and over 300 community-based organizations participate, resulting in more than 120,000 screenings each year.

If you or a loved one is experiencing suicidal thoughts, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.TALK (8255) or a mental health professional.

Article content sourced from a McLean Hospital press release. Image source: Recovery Friendly Taos.