Learn About Minority Mental Health Month

“Once my loved ones accepted the diagnosis, healing began for the entire family, but it took too long. It took years. Can’t we, as a nation, begin to speed up that process? We need a national campaign to destigmatize mental illness, especially one targeted toward African Americans… It’s not shameful to have a mental illness. Get treatment. Recovery is possible.”
 – Bebe Moore Campbell, 2005


Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

In May of 2008, the US House of Representatives announce July as Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month.

The resolution was sponsored by Rep. Albert Wynn [D-MD] and cosponsored by a large bipartisan group to achieve two goals:

  • Improve access to mental health treatment and services and promote public awareness of mental illness.
  • Name a month as the Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month to enhance public awareness of mental illness and mental illness among minorities.


About Bebe Moore Campbell

Bebe Moore Campbell was an author, advocate, co-founder of NAMI Urban Los Angeles and national spokesperson, who passed away in November 2006.

She received NAMI’s 2003 Outstanding Media Award for Literature. Campbell advocated for mental health education and support among individuals of diverse communities.

In 2005, inspired by Campbell’s charge to end stigma and provide mental health information, longtime friend Linda Wharton-Boyd suggested dedicating a month to the effort.

The duo got to work, outlining the concept of National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month and what it would entail. With the support of the D.C. Department of Mental Health and then-mayor Anthony Williams, they held a news conference in Southeast D.C., where they encouraged residents to get mental health checkups.

Support continued to build as Campbell and Wharton-Boyd held book signings, spoke in churches and created a National Minority Mental Health Taskforce of friends and allies. However, the effort came to a halt when Campbell became too ill to continue.

When Campbell lost her battle to cancer, Wharton-Boyd, friends, family and allied advocates reignited their cause, inspired by the passion of the life of an extraordinary woman.

The group researched and obtained the support of Representatives Albert Wynn [D-MD] and Diane Watson [D-CA], who co-signed legislation to create an official minority mental health awareness month.

Source: NAMI 2020, Learn About Minority Mental Health Month, National Alliance on Mental Illness, accessed July 1, 2020

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month and every year the goal is to fight stigma, provide support, educate the public, and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness, as well as their families. It also aims to draw attention to suicide, which can be precipitated by some mental illness.

During this time of stress related to the Covid-19 outbreak, fear, anxiety and the need for social distancing can be overwhelming and provoke strong emotions in adults and children.

As such, it is so very important that we are caring for ourselves and being there for each other, Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital stands with you. We can get through this together.


Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital Expands TeleHealth for Mental Health and Addiction Services

Free Virtual Consultations are Available 24/7.

Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital, the trusted choice for mental health and addiction services in Snohomish County since 2017 is now offering behavioral health services through telehealth. These are troubling times for people, both physically and mentally, and Smokey Point has expanded offerings to meet the needs of the community.

“People struggling with anxiety, depression, mental health or substance use-related issues can receive prompt help via telehealth from the safety of their own homes,” says Christopher Burke, CEO of Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital. “This immediate connection to a mental health professional is available 24/7 and is open to anyone.” The facility serves Veterans, Adults, and youth ages 13-17.

Connections can occur by laptop, cellphone or tablet online by visiting smokeypointbehavioralhospital.com or calling the facility directly at 1-360-651-6400. Individuals will be connected to a behavioral health specialist who will schedule a time for a private, HIPAA-compliant video chat and consultation.

During this time of home quarantine Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital is committed to assuring everyone in the community has access to mental health care and services. Telehealth screenings and assessments are ways for anyone to seek and obtain the help they need.

Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital remains open 24/7 and our full range of mental health and addiction services are available. Free virtual assessments are available at smokeypointbehavioralhospital.com.

About Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital:
Opened in 2017, Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital offers both inpatient care and & outpatient services for a multitude of mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety disorders, PTSD, and postpartum depression. Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital also treat substance us disorders such as alcohol abuse, prescription drugs and recreational drugs.

The need for behavioral health facilities continues to grow in the United States, as approximately 56% of American adults with a mental illness do not receive proper mental health treatment. Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital is trying to change that statistic as our staff works with patients and families to ensure they receive the care needed to overcome their current mental health or substance abuse struggles.

If you or someone you love is struggling with their mental health, please call us immediately at (360) 651-6400.


4 Tips for a Happy and Healthy New Year’s Resolution

The start of a new year, not to mention a new decade, is a great time to set goals. Too often, though, we don’t follow through on our New Year’s resolutions. Before you give up on yours entirely, consider these tips for giving meaning to your goals so you can make them more permanent. According to an article from Psychology Today, here are some tips for making meaningful resolutions. 

Keep it Manageable

When you’re working on a major long-term goal that requires you to make several changes, focus on one step at a time. When that behavior becomes a habit, incorporate another into your routine; trying to focus on too many action steps at once is a recipe for failure and burnout. Instead, start with something small and relatively easy to accomplish. Using this approach will make it easier for you to tackle tougher tasks and make realistic changes. 


Sometimes, we fail to stick to our new year resolutions because we make too many of them in the first place. Consider the goals that are most important to you and place them at the top of your list. Look for creative ways to achieve multiple goals simultaneously. For example, if you have a hobby that you want to devote more time to, and would also like to start a side business, think about how you can turn your pastime into a paycheck. Concentrating on your highest-priority goals — and developing realistic action plans to reach them — will increase your chances of success.

Seek Support

When working toward your goals, it can be extremely helpful to have a strong support network rallying around you. When your friends and family members know what you want to accomplish, they can hold you accountable, cheer you on, and offer a listening ear when you need it.

Don’t Give Up

When we encounter setbacks on the road to reaching our goals, it can be tempting to give up altogether. When you stumble, just dust yourself off and keep going. Instead of only keeping your eyes on the destination, enjoy the journey, too. Take it a day at a time and don’t expect perfection. Be kind to yourself and be sure to celebrate your successes.

If improving your mental health is one of your resolutions for 2020, Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital can help. We provide high-quality, individualized mental health services ranging from comprehensive inpatient treatment to intensive outpatient therapy. Contact us to learn more or to schedule an evaluation.


Signs of Burnout at Work & Ways to Relieve Workplace Stress

On-the-job stress is something almost all of us can relate to. It’s normal to occasionally feel a bit apprehensive about a tight deadline or difficult project. But when workplace stress becomes chronic, it can take a toll on your health and job performance. Here are some signs of workplace burnout to look out for, as well as what to do to promote mental wellness in the workplace.

Signs of Burnout at Work

These signs may indicate that job-related pressure is getting the better of you:

  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Physical problems such as headaches, stomach issues, and high blood pressure
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Anger, irritability, sadness, and apathy toward work you once enjoyed
  • Turning to drugs, alcohol, or other potentially addictive habits to cope

Ways to Relieve Workplace Stress

If you’re experiencing signs of burnout at work, there is good news: You can find healthy ways to manage your stress. Consider these ideas for enhancing your mental wellness in the workplace.

Keep a “Stress Journal”

Keep a journal of stressful situations at work. Record what happened, how you felt, and how you responded. Not only can writing be therapeutic, but it can also help you identify common workplace stressors. Once you understand more about what’s causing burnout, you can come up with a game plan to deal with it.

Make Healthy Lifestyle Choices

You’re better able to face difficulties at work when your body is well-nourished and rested. While it may be tempting to settle for fast food at lunch, choosing a healthier option will make it easier to stay focused for the rest of the day. Be sure to get enough sleep. And remember that regular exercise can go a long way toward boosting your mood, your immune system, and your overall well-being.

Build a Support Network to Overcome Burnout at Work

People who are experiencing signs of burnout at work often feel isolated in their jobs, so it’s vital to seek support from trusted friends and family. Your employer may be able to help you locate stress-management resources or get connected with a counselor. Building healthy relationships with co-workers can improve your morale and productivity, too.

If workplace stress is making you feel overwhelmed, Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital can help. We provide comprehensive, individualized mental health treatment options and programs to promote mental health in the workplace. Contact us to learn more or to schedule an evaluation.


Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder and How to Overcome SAD

As the mercury drops and the days get shorter, it’s tempting to go into hibernation. For many, this is more than just the “holiday blues” and actually manifests as a form of depression known as seasonal affective disorder (aptly abbreviated as “SAD”). If you’re concerned about yourself or a loved one, here are some common signs of the condition, along with a few tips for overcoming it.

Signs of Seasonal Affective Disorder

SAD is similar to general depression but usually clears up with the arrival of spring. Common signs include:

  • Low energy– feelings of sluggishness and a desire to sleep more
  • Increased appetite– often accompanied by cravings for carbohydrates, which can lead to weight gain
  • Feelings of depression, anxiety, and irritability

Practical Tips to Overcome Seasonal Affective Disorder

Light Therapy: Many people with winter depression turn to light therapy (phototherapy) for relief. You can purchase a lightbox (online, without a prescription) that mimics natural light and is much more powerful than regular light bulbs. Phototherapy is most effective when done first thing in the morning, for about 30 minutes. Dawn simulators, which gradually brighten your bedroom to wake you up, may also be helpful. Since SAD is associated with a decrease in natural light, try to get outside every day and keep the blinds open to let the sunshine in.

Healthy Diet: Instead of reaching for starchy comfort food, eat a healthy diet of whole foods, especially those rich in Vitamin D. You may want to consider a vitamin D supplement if you’re not getting enough of the nutrient through diet alone.

Exercise: Regular physical activity can help you combat the holiday blues (and lose weight if you’ve been eating too many carbs). For best results, try some aerobic exercise outside. Even a brisk walk can help lighten your mood.

Reflection: Daily journaling can serve as an outlet for negative feelings while helping you sort out your thoughts and identify depression triggers.

Socializing: Although it may be the last thing you want to do, make a point of planning plenty of social activities so you don’t isolate yourself.

Comprehensive Seasonal Affective Disorder Treatment

If SAD symptoms are interfering with your work and relationships, mental health treatment may be in order. Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital offers comprehensive, individualized mental health therapy that may include inpatient treatment, partial hospitalization, or intensive outpatient counseling.


Healthy Mental Health Strategies for Your Loved Ones To Develop