National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day is nationally sponsored by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and takes place on May 4th 2017. This year’s theme is “Partnering for Health and Hope” and Olympic medalists, Michael Phelps and Allison Schmitt will be hosting this event in Washington D.C. This day will feature the importance of social, emotional, physical, behavioral and mental needs of children and young adults throughout the United States. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIH), approximately 20 percent of all children in the Unites States either currently, or at some point in their life, will be diagnosed with a mental health disorder. Common mental health disorders in children 8-15 years of age order of prevalence include the following:
We think of eating disorders as an adolescent’s illness, something that develops during the turbulent transitions of young lives. Unfortunately, instances of young children with eating disorders are on the rise. According to CNN, research by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality shows that eating disorders in children under age 12 rose by 119% between 1999 and 2006.
Food and Families
It is clear to see how some people get their eyes, smile, or even sense of humor from their parents. However, it may be equally true but perhaps less obvious that our relationships with food are connected to our families. Often the behaviors taught and reinforced in our family system contribute to how we act and the decisions we make long after we leave our family home.