Thursday, January 3, 2013

Courses aimed at those caring for people with mental illness

The first, starting Tuesday Jan. 8, will be “With Hope in Mind,” which is an eight-class weekly course for family members or caregivers of adults with mental illness. National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Sumner County will be offering two free mental health courses in January in Hendersonville.With Hope in Mind” provides the basic education and skill training needed to cope with the difficulties associated with caring for adult relatives who exhibit behaviors like anger, depression, mania, psychosis, paranoia and other symptoms of mental illness.

The second, starting, Thursday Jan. 10, will be Beginnings, which is a six-class weekly course for parents or caregivers of children with behavioral issues. “Beginnings” provides a wealth of information for primary care providers of a child or adolescent who struggles with depression, mania, delusions, inattentiveness and other difficult behaviors. The course covers a spectrum of brain disorders, such as bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD. The course is helpful for primary caregivers along with grandparents, aunts, uncles, respite care providers and foster parents.

Free courses, materials

The “With Hope In Mind” and “Beginnings” classes address these common illnesses along with many others. The courses will be taught by NAMI volunteers who have taken instructor training and have personal experience in caring for someone with a mental illness. These free workshops are sponsored by NAMI Sumner County and are supported in part by a grant from NAMI Tennessee and the Tennessee Dept. of Mental Health & Developmental Disabilities.Both classes take place 6 p.m. at the Hendersonville's Babb Center at 105 Music Village Blvd. on their respective days.

Common skills

Both acclaimed workshops will help participants understand the feelings of anger, frustration, guilt, and hopelessness that arise when trying to help someone struggling with a mental illness. They also outline coping skills for dealing with the cycles of mental illness. Participants will learn helpful skills such as problem management, communication and crisis planning while being offered practical and emotional support as they learn that they are not alone.One in five Tennesseans is affected by a mental illness such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety disorder or eating disorder.

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