The Ottumwa Courier

December 3, 2013

MHP offers Mental Health First Aid Training

Ottumwa Courier

---- — OSKALOOSA – Mahaska Health Partnership Behavioral Health Services will be offering Mental Health First Aid Training from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 10 in the Cedar Bluff Learning Center (entrance #3) on their campus.

“There are many types of mental illnesses people might experience at some point in their lives,” MHP Behavioral Health Director Jan LeBahn, LMSW, said. “Mental Health First Aid training will help all types of people from teachers, to health care professionals, clergy members and the general public learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health problems and how to help.”

LeBahn said people suffering from mental illness are often lumped into one category of their diagnosis. “For example, just because a person is suffering from depression doesn’t mean they should be treated as though they need cheering up. It depends what kind of depression they have, such as postpartum, grief-induced, bipolar disorder and the list goes on.

“There are many types of depression and although they have some similar symptoms, afflicted people need to be treated very differently. This is also true for people who have anxiety disorders, paranoia or eating disorders. Each of these disorders is very different, and the people affected by them may have different coping mechanisms,” LeBahn stressed.

“Through classes such as Mental Health First Aid, the goal is for the public to learn how to recognize signs and symptoms and to be able to intervene. If more people affected by mental illness receive treatment, the lasting effects can be reduced.”

The cost of the class is $35, and six CEUs will be offered. To register for the next Mental Health First Aid training or for more information, call 641-672-3159. The deadline to register is Dec. 23.