NORTH LIBERTY — A North Liberty provider is offering free depression screenings to raise awareness of a national depression campaign.
Psychiatric Associations, a mental health care provider with offices in North Liberty and Iowa City, will provide free screenings on Thursday.
Thursday also falls on National Depression Screening Day, founded by an organization called Screening for Mental Health to encourage health care providers, schools, social service agencies and others to offer screenings for their community.
The organizations goal is to raise awareness on the mental health condition and to encourage more affected individuals to seek treatment.
Free, confidential screenings will be offered from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Psychiatric Associations in North Liberty, 1290 Jordan St.
Each screening will take about 15-20 minutes.
Appointments are available but not required.
For more information, call Psychiatric Associates at 319-356-6352.
Depression — also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression — is a common and serious mental health disorder that negatively affects how an individual feels, the way one acts and how one thinks.
Symptoms include persistent sad, anxious or “empty” mood; feelings or hopelessness; loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities; difficulty concentrating; difficulty sleeping or oversleeping; changes in appetite; and more.
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“Without treatment, these symptoms can be more serious, last longer and recur more often,” said Todd VerHoef, director of Psychiatric Associates, in a news release. “In severe cases, depression can lead to suicide. With treatment, however, most people feel significantly better in a matter of weeks.”
Major depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in the United States, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. It’s estimated that 16.2 million individuals aged 18 and older, or 6.7 percent of the adult population, had at least one major depressive episode during their life,
The National Institute of Mental Health also found that of those adults with major depressive episodes in 2016, 64 percent also experience severe impairment, meaning it interferes with or limits a person’s ability to carry out normal activities.
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