ALEXANDRIA, Va., April 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pathways to Wellness—this year's theme for May is Mental Health Month—calls attention to strategies and approaches that help all Americans achieve wellness and good mental and overall health.
"Wellness is essential to living a full and productive life," said Wayne W. Lindstrom, Ph.D., president and CEO of Mental Health America, which started May is Mental Health Month in 1949.
"We may have different ideas about what wellness means, but it involves a set of skills and strategies that prevent the onset or shorten the duration of illness and promote recovery and well-being. It's about keeping healthy as well as getting healthy."
Given the demands of daily life and trying to balance work and home, everyone is at risk of stress. But there are steps that maintain well-being and help everyone achieve wellness. These involve a balanced diet, regular exercise, enough sleep, a sense of self-worth, development of coping skills that promote resiliency, emotional awareness, and connections to family, friends and community.
For Mental Health Month, Mental Health America has created 31 Ways to Wellness—daily tips and suggestions that the general public can use throughout May and beyond. The online calendar can be found at http://mentalhealthamerica.net/go/may/calendar.
Dr. Lindstrom said fully embracing the concept of wellness not only improves health in the mind, body and spirit, but also maximizes one's potential to lead a full and productive life.
"Using strategies that promote resiliency and strengthen mental health and prevent mental health and substance use conditions lead to improved general health and a healthier society: greater academic achievement by our children, a more productive economy, and families that stay together.
"It's why pathways to wellness are so important and why we need to spread the word."
Mental Health America will explore many of these topics at its 2013 Annual Conference, Why Wellness Works: Breakthroughs and Pathways to Whole Health, which will take place June 5 - 8, 2013, at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland (just outside of Washington, DC). (For more information on the conference, go to http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/go/annualconference.)
For more than 60 years, Mental Health America and its affiliates around the country have led the observance of May is Mental Health Month by reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings. This unified effort includes educational messages about mental health and substance use conditions and the importance of good mental health.
Mental Health America (www.mentalhealthamerica.net), founded in 1909, is the nation's leading community-based network dedicated to helping all Americans achieve wellness by living mentally healthier lives. With our 240 affiliates across the country, we touch the lives of millions—Advocating for changes in mental health and wellness policy; Educating the public & providing critical information; and delivering urgently needed mental health and wellness Programs and Services.
SOURCE Mental Health America