Mental Health Awareness Month

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Chiyanna L. Maxwell
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
May was designated Mental Health Awareness Month in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization.

The purpose of Mental Health Awareness Month is to raise awareness about mental illnesses, show how to live with these conditions and how to maintain mental health and wellness.

“If the foundation of readiness is training, then the core of what makes an Airman more lethal is resilience,” said Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force Kaleth O. Wright. “I used to think [resilience] was the ability to bounce back, but I now see it as the ability to move through the hardships, the pain, the fear and the suffering.”

Mental health goes hand-in-hand with physical health. The body and mind act as one unit so it’s important to take care of emotional and mental states, as well as physical health.

The four pillars of Comprehensive Airman Fitness include mental, physical, social, and spiritual health. Effectively coping with mental stressors and challenges, adopting and sustaining healthy behaviors, engaging in healthy social networks, and adhering to beliefs, principles, or values can all help with resiliency.

Eating a balanced diet, getting sufficient amounts of sleep and exercise all make positive impacts, both mentally and physically.

These are very important when it comes to being a warfighter. Lacking in one area can negatively impact all the others, which can then effect job performance and overall health.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately one in every five adults in the United States experiences a mental illness in a given year and 6.9% of all adults in the United States had at least one major depressive episode in the past year.

“Mental health is important,” said Colonel Jennifer Reeves, 341st Missile Wing commander. “We have a lot of services to help people. We have the Mental Health clinic, the chapel, first sergeants, and several support groups on base that are judgement free and open to anyone.”

Airman & Family Readiness Center: 731-4900
Chapel: 731-3721
Mental Health Clinic: 731-4451
Mental Health America: 1-800-273-8255
Voices of Hope 24-Hour Crisis Line: 402-475-7273