During the month of October, Air Force Materiel Command will promote Depression Awareness. Depression is a common and treatable condition that, if left unrecognized, can lead to behavioral health issues and possibly suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
“The primary goals of this mental health awareness campaign are to educate the workforce about the signs and symptoms of depression, offer anonymous behavior health screenings, and promote the availability of support services,” said Greg Chadwick, AFMC’s Wellness Coordinator.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, symptoms of depression may include:
· Feeling sad or “empty”
· Feeling hopeless, irritable, anxious, or guilty
· Loss of interest in favorite activities
· Feeling very tired
· Difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions
· Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
· Persistent physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive disorders, or chronic pain
If you are experiencing some of these symptoms consistently, for at least two weeks, you may be interested in a depression screening. An anonymous and voluntary mental health screening tool is offered is offered on our website, www.AFMCwellness.com. Screening results are not a diagnosis, but are provided so participants may quickly and easily find out whether or not a professional consultation would be helpful.
If you or someone you know is experiencing signs of depression, help is available. Military OneSource is an option for military members, spouses, and dependents. For more information call (800) 342-9647 or visit www.militaryonesource.com. Active duty may also contact their local mental health clinic for services.
Civilian employees can contact the Employee Assistance Program for free, confidential counseling services at (800) 222-0364 or via the EAP website at www.foh4you.com.
For more information about depression education materials, visit www.AFMCwellness.com, or contact your local Civilian Health Promotion Services team.