Mental health first aid is a new line of intervention. Many of us have had first aid classes, that look out for the physical well being of another person. However, mental health first aid is a new field. Mental health first aid examines an individual that is going through depression, anorexia, psychosis, self injury, eating disorders and Alzheimer’s disease. It then provides information on how to help that person.
Seminars; According to their web site at mental health first aid, certification requires a twelve hour course of classroom instruction, by a qualified certified trainer. The class presents an overview of mental illness and substance abuse disorders in the U.S. It introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems. It builds an understanding of the impact of these disorders and the overview of common treatments. Those, who take the 12-hour course to certify as mental health first aiders, learn a 5-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to help an individual in crisis. They learn to connect with the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. This class is excellent for teachers, ministers, nurses, police, firefighters and many workers in the general public.
There are many times that we have witnessed a friend or individual, that was having some type of mental challenge. However, we didn’t know how to help. We are not professionals. However we can recognize problems, if someone is struggling.
Mental health first aid not only preps us for handling and dealing with mental disorders, but it gives us a better understanding and appreciation of what these individuals are going through.
Five Step Program; You will learn a program called the ALGEE. This includes the following five steps.
1. Assess for risk of suicide or harm. 2. Listen in non-judgment. 3. Give reassurance and information. 4. Encourage getting professional help. 5. Encourage self-help and other support strategies.
The class will also give you first hand strategies to put to use in various areas. You will also learn where to go for immediate assistance by a professional.
Finally, you will learn various strategies to put to use to assist the mentally challenged individual. These will include exercise, relaxation and meditation, self help books, peer support groups and engagement in helpful social networks.
Mental health first aid is a new area. The program is also looking to train instructors to pass on this valuable assistance to others. You can learn more at mental health first aid.org.