Blog

Learn more about Catholic Charities

We're serving those
in need regardless of
faith, culture, or situation.

RECENT POSTS:

  • From Despair to Hope: Your Lenten Generosity Transforms Lives
    By Litz Main As the Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the countless individuals and families who…
  • Exploring Mental Health Awareness
    Mental health awareness plays a vital role in fostering overall well-being. Yet, the stigma associated with mental health often prevents individuals from seeking help from a mental health counselor. This…
  • Family Tradition
    For many individuals, the journey from volunteering to becoming a staff member within an organization is a testament to dedication, passion, and a deep commitment to a cause. This transition…
  • Fair housing — Exploring the impact on families and communities
    April is Fair Housing Awareness Month, commemorating the passing of the Fair Housing Act in 1968. The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing because of race, color, national origin,…
  • How preparing for disaster can keep your family safe, and serve your community
    At Catholic Charities, we understand that disaster preparation, response, and recovery isn’t just a safety issue — it’s also a poverty issue. Unfortunately, disaster doesn’t discriminate between the financially stable…
  • Parishes partner to provide mental health support
    Culturally comfortable care for Spanish-speaking families By Ashley Wiskirchen Ilsi Palacios is the Hispanic Services Coordinator at Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri. In her role, she provides case…
  • Resource Fair marks Catholic Charities Food Pantry second anniversary.
    By Jennifer Hudson To address the growing needs of mid-Missourians, community organizations and local collaborators are strengthening relationships to provide essential support and resources. The Catholic Charities Food Pantry serves…
  • The Multifaceted Impact of Affordable Housing on Families and Communities
    Access to stable and affordable housing impacts household income and enhances community well-being in multiple ways. It is not just a roof over one’s head but the catalyst for positive…
  • Option for the Poor and Vulnerable
    “We must talk about poverty, because people insulated by their own comfort lose sight of it.” Dorothy Day   “Love is shown more in deeds than in words.” St. Ignatius…
  • Youth & Education Assistant
    Columbia, MO • Catholic Charities Job Type: Part-time Description Overview Catholic Charities of Central & Northern Missouri is seeking a dedicated addition to join our agency’s case management team and play a…
  • Site Director (Columbia)
    Columbia, MO • Catholic Charities Job Type: Full-time Description Overview Catholic Charities of Central & Northern Missouri is seeking a dynamic and experienced leader to join our team. The ideal candidate is…
  • Administrative Assistant (Central Office)
    Jefferson City, MO • Catholic Charities Job Type: Full-time Description Overview Catholic Charities of Central & Northern Missouri is seeking a customer-service minded addition to join our agency’s administrative team and play…

Exploring Mental Health Awareness

Mental health awareness plays a vital role in fostering overall well-being. Yet, the stigma associated with mental health often prevents individuals from seeking help from a mental health counselor. This article will explore mental wellness complexities by discussing its definition, common behavioral health conditions, and the importance of prioritizing psychosocial well-being.

What is Mental Health?

Mental health is an individual’s psychological, emotional, and social well-being. It influences how we think, act, and feel, impacting every aspect of our lives, from relationships to decision-making. Mental health is a spectrum. It ranges from optimal psychological functioning to mental illness. Like physical health, maintaining mental wellness is essential for leading a fulfilling and productive life.

Most Common Mental Health Conditions

  1. Anxiety Disorders
    Anxiety disorders are prevalent mental health issues. They involve excessive worry, fear, or unease about everyday situations. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Social Anxiety Disorder, and Panic Disorder are some examples. 

    People with anxiety disorders may experience physical symptoms such as rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, or restlessness. This health concern can significantly impact their daily activities and overall life satisfaction if left untreated.
  2. Depression
    Another prevalent mental health condition is depression. It is characterized by persistent sadness, hopelessness, and a loss of interest in once-used activities. Depression affects how individuals think, feel, and behave, often leading to a lack of energy, changes in sleep patterns, and difficulty concentrating. If not addressed, anxiety disorders can significantly affect one’s daily functioning and overall quality of life.

Why is Mental Health Important?

It’s essential to prioritize mental health for various reasons:

  1. Overall Well-being
    Just as we care for our physical health by exercising and eating well, we must also consider our mental well-being. Ignoring cognitive health can lead to chronic stress, reduced productivity, and decreased life satisfaction. Prioritizing mental wellness allows individuals to lead fulfilling lives with enhanced emotional resilience.
  2. Physical Health Connection
    Mental and physical health are intertwined. Mental health conditions can contribute to developing or worsening physical health problems. For example, chronic stress can lead to high blood pressure or heart disease.
    On the other hand, physical conditions like chronic pain can affect mental wellness, leading to anxiety or depression. By addressing these health concerns, individuals can improve their overall fitness and prevent the potential negative impact on physical health.
  3. Positive Relationships
    Nurturing mental health can enhance personal relationships. Individuals with good mental well-being can effectively communicate, empathize, and connect with others. Cognitive health challenges can strain relationships, but seeking help and improving mental well-being can contribute to better connections with loved ones.

Prioritize Your Mental Wellness

At Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri, we offer counseling services to support individuals in their journey toward better mental health. Our mental health counselors provide a safe and confidential space for individuals to explore their emotions, thoughts, and concerns. Call us!

Catholic Charities currently offers two options that support accessible and affordable mental wellness services:

  • Hope is a FREE chat service providing encouragement and strategies on how to manage everyday stress and anxiety using Chatbot technology. To access this support, users will text “Hi” to Hope at 1-202-949-7249 or visit facebook.com/HopeCCUSA to get instant support (Start Code: CCCNMO). Hope is available in English and Spanish.
  • Clinica para la Familia: Catholic Catholic Charities, in collaboration with the Hispanic Ministry Office of the Diocese of Jefferson City and parishes throughout the diocese, offers Catholic counseling online services in Spanish from Clinica para la Familia (CLIFAM). This program is available in 7 parishes in our 38-county service area.