Disorder Based Resources

AnxietyAddictionADHDAutismBipolar DisorderDepression

Eating DisordersOCDPTSDSchizophreniaTourette’s 

Anxiety and Panic Disorders:

If you or someone you know is in need of professional help, there are resources to help link them to a provider near their area. Use this link to find practicing practitioners in all states and counties.  Free walk-in counselling is also available for those living in Minnesota.

Support groups are another alternate form of therapy. Attending a support group can provide more comfort knowing you are not alone. NAMI Minnesota provides free support group meetings to those living in the Twin Cities and metro area (Saint Paul, Minneapolis, Edina and Rochester). Their free program Open Doors is available to the public and for any age range.

If you are undiagnosed and unsure of what your symptoms may mean, online assessments can help with curiosity. Please note that these assessments are not %100 accurate and for a legitimate diagnosis seek professional support.

Another great free online program provided by Alina Health called “change to chill” provides a series of episodes geared to helping teens “chill out” and mange stress.

Panic attacks can be very scary and seem life threatening. There is a 5-step calming technique that can be used as a mindfulness holistic approach to reducing the stress of a panic attack. It is known as A-W-A-R-E.

Acknowledge & Accept

Wait & Watch (and maybe, Work)

Actions (to make myself more comfortable)

Repeat

End

For more information about what each step entails, visit this link.

Friends and families can find it difficult to know how to respond correctly to someone living with anxiety. If you know someone living with anxiety there are tools to help you understand the do’s and don’ts of what to say/do.

Some anxieties are more specific. Here are ways to learn how to help someone with Social Anxiety and Panic Disorder.

As an adult, you may feel more responsibility to manage anxiety in children and youth. As a parent calming and de-escalating stressful situation can be difficult. This link can provide you with some tips on how to handle anxiety in the household. Teachers also work with anxious youth daily, finding ways to work with anxiety in the classroom is important. This link may help you find some tips to implement on your students and reduce anxiety.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the anxiety fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.


Addiction and Substance Abuse:

Addiction and substance abuse are very common among teens and young adults. Becoming dependant on a substance is the definition of addiction. Most addicts do not admit they need help, so their loved ones struggle the most with supporting their needs. If you are a loved one that is caring for someone or knows someone with addiction and substance abuse problems here is a link to help you pinpoint the first signs of addiction.

AA/NA meetings are confidential groups of anonymous people in which you can discuss your addiction without the pressure of talking directly to a loved one. These meetings are free and are located all over Minnesota and the U.S. This link can lead you to AA meetings in your area and this link can lead you to NA meetings in your area.

If you are in the Saint Paul/Minneapolis or in the metro area this link will help you find more local care. If you want information on drug abuse programs in the Twin Cities metro area click here.

Understanding the science and behavioral implications of addiction is also important. It is important to know that the same drug does not affect every person the same way. This video can be used to understand the basics of addiction.

If you are interested in information about specific drugs, use these links to learn  more.

Throughout all of the following sections on different substances, there is really good basic information, with links to more in-depth information if needed.

Alcohol Cocaine Hallucinogens Heroin

Synthetic Marijuana Tobacco & Nicotine

Marijuana  MDMA/Ecstasy Opioids 

Prescription Cold Medicine  

ADHD:

Sometimes parenting or teaching a child/youth with ADHD is challenging. Knowing what to say and when to say it can be a difficult path to understand. There are some things we might end up saying that can be taken the wrong way. These are some do’s and don’t when it comes to communicating with people that have ADHD.

Don’t Say:

  • If only you tried focusing more you could do better
  • Stop moving and fidgeting around
  • I love you but… sometimes…
  • Obviously you didn’t take your meds today
  • Laugh at something they say because you think it is “stupid” or “irrational”

Do say:

  • If you need to move around, it’s ok
  • How was your day?
  • Take your time, go at your own pace
  • Let me know if you need me to help
  • I am here to support you

For more tips on how to help manage your child’s ADHD at home visit this page. For fact sheets and information about ADHD in particular age groups, click here.

Self care/regulation tips for someone with ADHD

  • Be mindful of your sleep
  • Keep a small journal with you and write down all your ideas when they come to mind
  • Try saying no. Some people with ADHD take on too many tasks and forget to leave time for themselves
  • Take up a hobby, it could be artistic, academic, athletic or anything that interests you. If you like working hands on you could try art, photography, making sculptures, etc.. You could even take a current hobby you have and explore it more. For example if you are interested in photography, try learning film photography and take a dark room class. If you are interested in painting, try different mediums like watercolor, acrylic or make your own paint from mashed up berries!

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the ADHD fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Autism Spectrum Disorder:

Living with autism and caring for someone with autism are two important needs to address. Commonly, those who care for autistic children or adults face the challenge of finding adequate treatment, working with schools and making sure their child is treated fairly. Autistic children themselves tend to face more challenges with socializing, sensory issues and behavior. Autism Speaks is an organization devoted to providing resources and support for those living with autism. If you are looking for specific therapies like music, play, occupational and more, they have a guide posted on their website for providers in each state. If you are a parent seeking parent trainings or looking for autism supported after school programs, they also have made that available through their website.

Learning outside the classroom:

There are new technologies that are being developed everyday for people with autism and other learning disabilities so they can understand the world beyond the classroom. Apps have been created with a purpose in mind to improve reading, writing, social and math skills. To see a list of these apps click here.

Transitioning from dependent to independent living

Some experts say that beyond intellectual and educational learning, basic self care and life skills are necessary for people with autism to develop in order to maintain employment or living on their own in the future. Simple tasks like showering, cooking, cleaning, budgeting, grocery shopping and more are all just as important to learn to insure a more independent future.

Tips for self care:

  • Create a daily routine (get dressed, make breakfast, brush teeth, etc..)
  • Become interested in many topics
  • Sleep and eat healthy
  • Go on a walk and observe your surroundings
  • Ask a friend to play a game with you (outside or inside)  don’t try to to be very competitive…
  • Record all your ideas you get throughout the day in a notepad
  • Love yourself!

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the Autism fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Bipolar Disorder:

Bipolar disorder is more common than you may think. It affects nearly 6 million Americans and usually develops between the ages of 15-25, when the brain is maturing the most. Unfortunately bipolar disorder is too often stigmatized and misunderstood. There are several treatment options, medication, therapy, living a healthy lifestyle and holistic approaches. All of which should be considered by you and your provider.  

Self care tips:

  • Log/record your moods. The DBSA has created a website where you can create an account and track your bipolar symptoms. Click here to create an account.
  • Manage your sleep, try to get between 7-8 hours of sleep every night
  • Try to reduce the amount of caffeine you consume. Talk to your provider to see what is a safe amount
  • Do something for yourself. (Paint your nails, groom your hair/face, take a long shower or bath, get a massage, etc..)
  • Increase the amount of time you spend in the light (especially for those with seasonal depressive disorders). If you can not spend much time outdoors, there are sun lamps you can buy to bring to work or home that produce artificial sunlight
  • Exercise or do fun activities like going on a walk with your friends, or a bike ride
  • Need a psychiatric crisis toolkit at your fingertips? There’s an app for that! Click here to view the desktop version of the “rescue kit”. Open the link on your smartphone to download it through an app store.

For those caring for people with bipolar disorder, there is a guide to help you understand some helpful steps you can take to support yourNeed a psychiatric crisis toolkit at your fingertips? There’s an app for that! Click here to view the desktop version of the “rescue kit”. Open the link on your smartphone to download it through an app store. one. Click here to view the guide. As a caregiver, another thing you must look out for is suicidal ideation. 15-17% of people living with bipolar take their own lives. If you notice symptoms of suicide please talk to their provider immediately and contact 9-1-1 if you witness them attempting suicide.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the  Bipolar fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Depression:

Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders among adolescents and adults. It is also one of the most misunderstood disorders. With one in every eight adolescents living with depression and 15 million adults living with depression, it is becoming the fastest growing mental health condition. Often times it is overlooked as a phase or circumstantial and that it will pass as a situation improves. However, this is not always the case. Depression is not just in your head, studies have proved that people with depression are four times as likely to develop a heart attack than those without a history of the illness.

If you are looking for support groups in Minnesota click here to be directed to a list of them within the state.

Tips for caring for someone with depression:

  • Don’t patronize them and say “It’s just a phase” or “get over it”
  • Make them a meal or surprise them with something they like
  • Take them outside, on a walk or play a game
  • Hug them (if they want you to)
  • Respond to their destructive comments. For example if they are talking about being worthless, ugly, stupid and other negative comments, reassure them that they are important to you and remind them of all their great qualities

Tips for self care:

  • Make a playlist. If you like music and music cheers you up, make a playlist that will boost your mood!
  • Take a bubble bath… because bubbles are fun!
  • Change up your environment. What is the Feng-Shui of your room? Look at some cool room designs online and see what you can do! Add colorful lights, glow in the dark stars, hang pictures with clothespins
  • Watch some funny videos on youtube or a show on Netflix
  • Call a friend you haven’t talked to in a while
  • Need a psychiatric crisis toolkit at your fingertips? There’s an app for that! Click here to view the desktop version of the “rescue kit”. Open the link on your smartphone to download it through an app store.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the Major depressive disorder fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Eating Disorders:

Eating disorders are known to be the slow, silent killer. It can change the basic human need to eat into a battle every time you see food. With supermodels, celebrities and the media endorsing thin and “perfect” bodies, adolescents and adults are facing a growing desire to be “skinny” and “beautiful”. Spotting someone with an eating disorder is also difficult. With anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder all having different warning signs and symptoms. Anorexia is often the easiest to spot as a caregiver due to the rapid decrease in weight. Bulimia and binge eating disorders can be more difficult to spot and understand because it may not alter their body image as much. If you are interested in taking an online screening to see if you or someone you are concerned about matchs up with symptoms click here. Please note that it will not give you an accurate diagnosis. Visit a mental health professional for a medical diagnosis.

If you are interested in participating in an online support group, click here. They offer support groups for youth, adults, emotional eating and those that care for people with eating disorders.

Self care tips:

  • Try to eat whenever you want and whatever you want (but only if you are hungry). Learn your body’s signals again and listen to what your body needs. Trust that it will let you know when it is time to eat and when you are full.
  • Eat more fruits and veggies. They make you feel good and they are good for you!
  • Go on a walk or do an activity when you feel the need to binge/purge. Another thing you can do is call a friend and have any kind of conversation; Just try to distract yourself from binging/purging.
  • Try aromatherapy. Essential oils can be calming if you are getting anxiety thinking about food or eating. Put some oil on your wrists and neck. Peppermint oil is refreshing, lavender is calming, fruity extracts are lightening, or you can pick one that just smells good!
  • Suck on suckers, or a popsicle, chew gum or eat a mint if you are worried about binging.
  • Hang out with your friends and have fun!
  • Talk to your doctor about steps you can take to make sure you are healthy.

Places to go for recovery in MN:

For family based care and therapists specialized in working with eating disorders click here to view the list of providers in every state.

Tips for caregivers:

  • Early intervention is better! Trust your gut if you think your loved one may have an eating disorder
  • Remind your loved one to “value their brain”. Malnourishment, and poor eating habits affect the brain. If your loved one has anorexia, know that eventually the body will start consuming the fatty tissue around the brain, around their organs and the body will slowly shut down.
  • Do not force your child to eat. Remember that the anxiety of eating is very impactful to those with eating disorders. Make sure they have healthy options but do not over do it and make them feel forced to eat food.
  • Make food you know they like. Leave food on the counter and let them choose when they are ready to eat it.
  • If they are anorexic and faint or suddenly drop, they need immediate medical attention. Take them to the hospital or call 9-1-1.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the  Eating Disorder fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

To read more about eating disorders, please scroll to the bottom of this webpage for articles written by organizations sent to Youth MOVE as resources for you!

OCD:

Living with OCD can be very difficult with the common stigmatization. People who do not have OCD often use ODC as an adjective to describe how they are feeling about something in the moment without realizing the severity of the disorder. ODC causes the extreme need to do something a certain amount of times or in a pattern to relieve a certain anxiety. Those living with OCD often times find it difficult to go out in public or have healthy relationships with people. OCD can also be linked with other disorders like eating disorders, anxiety, PTSD, Tourette’s and bipolar. Remember that OCD among other mental health disorders is not necessarily genetic or something you are born with. Most people develop OCD later in life or in their teenage years. It can derive from PTSD, trauma, anxiety and more. Some people even get it from being bullied in school. It is important to keep that in mind when you are caring for someone with OCD.

Here is a guide developed for high school and college students on what OCD is and ways to manage it. Click here to access the guide. To find treatment, providers, therapy, and support groups click here. The most common types of therapy include, exposure therapy and cognitive therapy. At home therapy is also an option.

Self care tips:

  • Challenge your OCD. Is it rational? Can you prevent yourself from doing the compulsion? What would happen if you did nothing?…
  • Slowly reduce the compulsion. If you usually have to wash your hands 10 times, cut it down to 8 (move in even or odd numbers, whatever puts you at ease)
  • Increase the time before performing your compulsion. For example if you need to wash your hands immediately after touching someone or something, wait 2 or 5 minutes and see how you feel.
  • Identify your triggers and stay away if possible, from what may cause your extreme anxiety.
  • “Over perform” the ritual in order to drive it into extinction (ask your provider if this is a good alternative).

Tips for those caring for people with OCD

  • Do not engage in the rituals with them. It is easy to just comply by their compulsion, however it does not help them recover in the long run if they know that you will participate in their behaviors.
  • Try to not take everything so seriously. Keep conversations light hearted and humorous, seen as how they are already living with the severity of their disorder.
  • Take care of yourself. Join a support group or just treat yourself. Take a bubble bath, go to the spa or pamper yourself. Drink some tea or anything that reduces your own anxiety.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the OCD fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Breathe to this circle to help reduce anxiety

PTSD:

PTSD can be difficult to live with due to the several disorders that it can involve. Depression, anxiety, bipolar, schizophrenia and OCD can all potentially be triggered by PTSD. PTSD is severe trauma caused by abuse, violence, witnessing violence, natural disasters and more. For veterans there is a number of free services you can receive to treat your PTSD provided for free by the government. Click here to view the VA website on where to get help. If you are not a veteran you can look for therapists in your area by clicking here.

If you feel alone and like you are the only one experiencing PTSD and trauma, know that you are not alone. Online forums and support groups let you post anonymously how you feel and allows you to comment and chat with other PTSD survivors. Click here to be directed to an online forum. If you are looking to join a support group, click here to find one in your area.

Self Care tips:

  • Spend more time outside, enjoy nature!
  • Explore the possibility of getting a service dog
  • Start volunteering in your neighborhood
  • Try to limit the amount of time you spend watching TV
  • Do fun physical activities, bike, climb, hike, swim, ski, etc..
  • Take up a hobby, it could be artistic, academic, athletic or anything that interests you. If you like working hands on you could try art, photography, making sculptures, building things etc.. You could even take a current hobby you have and explore it more. For example if you are interested in photography, try learning film photography and take a dark room class. If you are interested in painting, try different mediums like watercolor, acrylic or make your own paint from mashed up berries!
  • Need a psychiatric crisis toolkit at your fingertips? There’s an app for that! Click here to view the desktop version of the “rescue kit”. Open the link on your smartphone to download it through an app store.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the PTSD fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.



Schizophrenia:

Schizophrenia is rare and often occurs in late teen years into late twenties. Most people that live with schizophrenia are misunderstood and stigmatized due to the severity of their diagnosis. If you are interested in joining an anonymous support group, click here to find groups in your area. If you are interested in participating in phone call support groups here is a schedule and info:

Every Sunday – 7 pm Eastern Time

Every Thursday – 7 pm Eastern Time

Every Friday – 7 pm Eastern Time

Family and Friends Support Group

Every Tuesday – 7 pm Eastern Time

Frequent Guest Speakers

Toll-free calls

Call-in information: (855) 640-8271

Entry code: 88286491#

Caring for someone with schizophrenia:

  • Need a psychiatric crisis toolkit at your fingertips? There’s an app for that! Click here to view the desktop version of the “rescue kit”. Open the link on your smartphone to download it through an app store.
  • A delusion will not go away by reasoning and therefore needs no discussion. It is very important not to challenge the person’s beliefs or delusions. They are very “real” to the person who experiences them, and there’s little point in arguing with them about the delusions or false beliefs. Instead, move the conversation along to areas or topics where you both agree upon
  • Your family member is entitled to their own life journey, as you are
  • Strange behavior is symptom of the disorder. Don’t take it personally
  • You have a right to assure your personal safety

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the schizophrenia fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

Tourette’s:

Living with Tourette’s can cause both educational and social challenges. Because the disorder displays physical symptoms, the stigma is much greater. For information on specialized therapists that work with Tourette’s, click here to find a provider near you. Click here if you are a teacher, principal, counselor or support staff looking for guides and resources on Tourette’s in the classroom.

As a teacher, parent, or any adult working with students in search for fact sheets and information about symptoms to notice in the classroom and possible behavioral implications, the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) has free fact sheets for each disorder for viewing. To access the Tourette’s fact sheet click here. These fact sheets are apart of MACMH revised publication of “An Educators Guide to Children’s Mental Health” which is available for purchase by clicking here.

 

Learning Curve- Why We Need To Learn More About Eating Disorders

So many of us have a unique relationship with food in one way or another.

You obviously need to eat food for your very survival, but that doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface when it comes to how we view the role of food in our daily lives and even how we think about ourselves.

It is believed that some thirty million people in the United States alone, don’t view food in quite the same enjoyable and enthusiastic way that others do, and these people are likely to be suffering from some form of eating disorder.

Understanding food addiction

It seems that we have a long way to go to address the wide variety of misconceptions and general lack of understanding that surrounds food addiction and eating disorders.

Probably the most common misconception surrounding food addiction, according to Nutrionsecrets.com is that overweight and obese people simply lack a basic level of self-control, but the subject is much more complex and challenging to resolve than simply suggesting some exercise and strict diet for a few weeks.

Some of us genuinely have what can be classed as an addiction to certain foods for example, such as a need to consume certain types of beverages or calorific desserts with almost alarming regularity.

Most common eating disorders

Although there are many subtle variations which define and affect people in certain ways, there are three main types of eating disorders.

Anorexia Nervosa

At the other end of the scale, a life-threatening eating disorder which is the polar opposite of a food addiction and a binge-eating disorder, is anorexia nervosa.

Anorexia is an eating disorder that results in the person effected, harboring an intense fear of gaining weight and the visual clues that something is wrong are not hard to spot at a certain point in their illness, as they will have an abnormally low body weight.

You will often find that people are diagnosed as being anorexic will deploy some very severe and extreme measures in their perceived battle to control their weight and shape.

In the eyes of an anorexic, they do not see their body shape and size in the same way that others do, which means that even when they are painfully thin, they continue to use extreme and excessive measures in an effort to control their weight and shape.

Bulimia Nervosa

This condition is often generally referred to as bulimia. It is also a serious and potentially life-threatening disorder, which is characterized by bouts of bingeing and purging.

You will often find that someone who is bulimic, will restrict their food intake throughout the day in an effort to control their problem. This often only results in a regular cycle of binge eating, followed by purging again.

Someone with bulimia will often consume a large volume of food in a very short space of time, and then use tactics such as inducing vomiting in order to try and rid themselves of the calories they have taken on.

Binge-eating

People who suffer from a binge-eating disorder will regularly eat too much food and demonstrate a general lack of control over their eating habits.

One of the fundamental problems with a binge-eating disorder in particular, is the fact that someone with this problem, will often be embarrassed about their lack of control, resulting in many sufferers attempting to hide their difficulties by regularly eating alone.

There are in fact many eating disorders, all of which are equally distressing to the sufferer, and with so many people suffering from some form of disorder, it is time that we learnt more about these problems.

Written by NutritionSecrets.