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    Why Care?

    by Ngozi Osuagwu, MD | October 6th, 2019

    Why Care?


    • Because 1 in 5 adults will experience mental illness this year.
    • Because it could be a family member, a friend or one of us that is diagnosed with a mental illness.
    • Because there is such a stigma regarding mental illness causing people to suffer in silence.
    • Because suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10 – 34 years old.
    • Because mental illness is a disease just like other diseases and when the right diagnosis is made, there are treatment options.
    • Because we can make a difference.

    This week is Mental Illness Awareness week and although we should be talking about mental health every day, this week is when mental health advocates come together as one unified voice to educate the public.

    There are many tools to screen for mental illness. If you are concerned or concerned for a loved one, please click here to find out more. We cannot use these questionnaires to make a definitive diagnosis but it can tell us that you need additional help.

    Mental health is a component of our overall health. There is no shame in having a mental illness like there is no shame in having high blood pressure or diabetes. What is a shame is not getting help. Let us help each other by showing that we care. We care about our mental health and we care about those that have been diagnosed with a mental illness.

    If you are in a crisis – text “NAMI” to 741741 for help. They are available 24/7.

    For more information on Mental Illness Awareness week, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness  (NAMI) website.

    Mental Health America for Mental Illness Awareness week has information on 7 days/7 ways discussing the seven common mental illnesses – one for each day of the week – Anxiety, Bipolar disorder, Psychosis, Eating Disorder, Depression, PTSD, Addiction/Substance Use Disorder

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    With her trademark wit and straightforward communication, Dr. Osuagwu continues to dole out valuable medical advice using the letter form and addressing women’s health conditions and issues in a method that was praised for its innovative approach in her earlier award-winning book, Letters to My Sisters: Plain Truths and Straightforward Advice from a Gynecologist. In this book, each letter is paired with reference sources and statistics about the condition that is the subject of the letter.

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    The book discusses common gynecological and women’s health issues in a series of witty and entertaining letters. These letters, all educational, offer suggestions on what approaches to take in tackling the medical problems that typically bring women to an ob/gynecologist. The letters are spiced with art, a poem and quotes. Although its emphasis is on gynecology and women’s health, it touches on some other medical issues that make women visit their doctors.

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