The following organizations have developed materials about mental illnesses and their treatment that may be useful to you or your students. Much of the information is available on the World Wide Web. Phone numbers are also provided here for your reference.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP)
The AACAP is the leading national professional medical association dedicated to treating and improving the quality of life of children, adolescents, and families affected by mental, behavioral, or developmental disorders. The organization includes over 6,500 child and adolescent psychiatrists and other interested physicians. This site provides information about child and adolescent psychiatry, fact sheets for parents and caregivers, updates on current research on children’s mental health, and information on managed care. It also includes guidelines for seeking a child or adolescent psychiatrist and a referral directory.
American Psychiatric Association (APA)
Over 38,000 U.S. and international physicians are members of the APA making it the world’s largest psychiatric organization. The vision of the organization is to ensure that high-quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment is available and accessible for all people who have a mental disorder. The Web site includes information about mental illnesses for the public, advice for choosing a psychiatrist, breaking news about mental illnesses, advocacy information to reduce stigma associated with mental illness, and books and other publications related to mental illness.
Attention Deficit Information Network Inc. (AD-IN)
AD-IN is a nonprofit, volunteer organization that offers support and information to families of children with ADD, adults with ADD, and mental health professionals. The AD-IN network of parent and adult support chapters throughout the United States provides information on training programs and speakers. AD-IN also presents conferences and workshops for parents and professionals on current issues, research, and treatments for ADD.
Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS)
The CMHS, a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is charged with leading the national system that delivers mental health services. The mission of the center is to provide treatment and support services needed by adults and children with mental disorders and serious emotional problems.
Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD)
CHADD is a major advocate and key information source for people dealing with attention disorders. The organization sponsors support groups and publishes two newsletters concerning attention disorders for parents and professionals. In addition to providing general information on ADHD, the organization offers referrals to CHADD chapters, branches, and other organizations that serve people with ADHD.
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)
The mission of DBSA is to improve the lives of people living with mood disorders. The organization seeks to educate patients, families, and the public concerning the nature of depressive illnesses. DBSA maintains an extensive catalog of helpful books, as well as a list of support groups throughout the United States.
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI)
HelpLine: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264)
NAMI is a nonprofit, grassroots, self-help support and advocacy organization of families and friends of people with severe mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and anxiety disorders. This site includes links to local affiliates and support groups, an 800-number help line, information about mental illnesses and their treatment, and brief articles describing the results of research studies on mental illnesses and their treatment.
National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression (NARSAD)
NARSAD is an organization of concerned families linked with professionals to raise and distribute funds for scientific research into the causes, cures, treatments, and prevention of brain disorders, especially schizophrenia, depression, and bipolar disorder.
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
The mission of the NIMH is to diminish the burden of mental illness through research. This site provides current and authoritative information about the latest research on mental illness.
National Mental Health Association (NMHA)
The NMHA is the oldest and largest nonprofit organization in the United States that addresses all aspects of mental health and mental illness. This site provides information about a variety of mental illnesses and their treatments, as well as a directory of local NMHA affiliates. The directory will help you locate mental health resources that are relatively near your school. This site also includes news regarding the advocacy efforts of the NMHA and a list of additional mental health resources.
National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse
The National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse is a consumer-run, national technical-assistance center that helps connect individuals with self-help and advocacy resources. The organization also provides expertise to self-help groups and other peer-run services for mental health consumers.
Suicide Prevention: United States National Suicide and Crisis Hotlines
National Suicide Prevention Hotline
Learning about mental illnesses, especially depression, may raise concerns that a student, parent, or coworker is having suicidal thoughts. The Web site and phone numbers help users find information about risk factors for and danger signs of suicide and, most importantly, resources that help prevent suicide. The Web site includes a link to the Crisis Call Chart, which lists the 800 number for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline and provides links to additional hotlines, organized by state and city.