Mental health in the Rose City

What steps can we take to help ourselves and our loved ones

Recent statistics show that this year, one in six Portlanders will suffer from some form of mental health issue. From anxiety to depression to dementia, these issues can range from mild challenges to life-threatening obstacles.

Our mental health can impact every aspect of our lives, from how we think to how we feel to how we act. Unfortunately, the causes of these challenges can be largely out of our control, triggered by our genes, our brain chemistry, traumatic life experiences or a family history of mental health issues. But, the good news is that help is available if patients or their loved ones can identify the warning signs. Working with a trained counselor or physician can often improve or eliminate symptoms.

Early warning signs of mental health issues
  • Eating or sleeping too much or too little
  • Pulling away from people and usual activities
  • Having low or no energy
  • Feeling emotionally numb or like nothing matters
  • Having unexplained aches and pains
  • Feeling helpless or hopeless
  • Smoking, drinking or using drugs more than usual
  • Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried or scared
  • Yelling or fighting with family and friends
  • Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
  • Having persistent thoughts and memories that you can’t get out of your head
  • Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
  • Thinking of harming yourself or others
  • Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work or school

May is Mental Health Month, and doctors and nurses at The Portland Clinic want to help Portlanders enjoy a happy, healthy lifestyle. If you or someone you love is struggling with any of the symptoms above, please schedule time to come speak with one of our clinicians by calling our behavioral health access coordinator 503-221-0161, ext. 2102.