New local support group for Depression and Bipolar Disorder - WRBL

New local support group for Depression and Bipolar Disorder

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The local chapter of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance is launching a new support group. Ben Overby, one of the organizers says the timing is right for such a support group in our area.

"Now it is understood that all people can recover from mental illness. But that is a new belief. As late as the 1980's it was believed people couldn't recover from mental illness and could only be managed and cared for. In 2006 the Association of State Mental Health Directors produced a paper entitled Morbidity and Mortality in People In People With Mental Illness that state, "People with serious mental illness served by the public mental health system die, on average, 25 years earlier than the general population." That was a wake up call," Overby says. 

Overby also says Georgia is leading the rest of the country in the utilization of peer specialists to support the recovery of individuals with mental illness.

"Evidence shows that people can recover and get their lives back and that peer support plays a key role in that recovery.  People can determine the direction of their life, even after all the losses associated with mental illness," says Overby.

Up to 4% of the population lives with bipolar disorder. Major depressive disorder is the leading cause of disability in the US in people 15-44 years old, effecting nearly 7% of the population.

The local support group will have its inaugural meeting July 9, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. at Highland Community Church located at 3408 5th Avenue in Columbus.

DBSA support groups are open to anyone who is diagnosed with a mood disorder, has a family member or friend who is diagnosed, or who thinks they might have depression or bipolar disorder.

Overby says the meetings will be confidential and peer-led.



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