Panama City

Panama City, FL – Bay County mental health professionals want you to recognize symptoms

Panama City, FL –

BAY COUNTY Florida (WMBB) – The first signs of depression can be hard to see, but Emerald Coast Behavioral Center wants to end the sigma of mental health.

Regular daily stress can be overwhelming for many, combine this locally with the current uncertainty of COVID-19 and still the aftermath of Hurricane Michael, for some it can cause mental health issues.

“Mental health is just as important as physical health,” said Behavioral Center of the Emerald Coast Director of Clinical Services Jeffery Stone.

One disease that affects the brain is Stone’s way of explaining mental health.

“Three years later, there are still people struggling with the aftermath of Hurricane Michael,” Stone said. “And on top of that, we have an epidemic, a pandemic that has been going on for a year and a half and is putting a lot of pressure on people’s mental health. “

Based on the inability to work for some and limited social support systems, Stone explains that at least one in four people will experience a mental health crisis.

“The specific symptoms that we see across the spectrum tend to withdraw from the support system, decreased energy, decreased motivation to get up and do things, eventually increased irritability and to poor sleep, ”Stone said.

Often, these mild symptoms can turn into drug addiction or suicidal thoughts.

“I think the vast majority of any receiving facility or inpatient psychiatric facility, the vast majority of patients will be there for depression and suicide,” he said. “So we see this fairly consistently. “

There are of course ways to take care of your mental health at home. Talk with family or friends, seek out a support system, and speak with a therapist. Just to name a few. But if you notice that more help is needed, Stone said to contact Emerald Coast Behavioral Center directly.

The number for Bay County Crisis Line (850) 522-4485.

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