Promotion of Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Well-Being

Mental, emotional, and behavioral health refers to the overall psychological well-being of individuals and includes the presence of positive characteristics, such as the ability to manage stress, demonstrate flexibility under changing conditions, and bounce back from adverse situations.

From childhood through late adulthood, there are certain times when we may need help addressing problems and issues that cause us emotional distress or make us feel med-1044-depressionoverwhelmed despite how healthy we may think we are.

Military life, especially the stress of deployments or mobilizations, can
present challenges to service members and their families that are both unique
and difficult. Some are manageable, some are not. Many times we can successfully deal with them on our own. In some instances matters get worse and one problem can trigger other more serious issues. When you are experiencing these types of difficulties, you may benefit from the assistance of an experienced, trained professional to check things out and see what is really happening.

Seeking help is not a sign of weakness, but of strength. Prevention and early intervention is key. Don’t wait until the issues snowball into a major event that affects your work and home life as well as your relationships.

Services available to the Ellsworth AFB community:
Mental Health Clinic 385-3656 (Active Duty Only)
Base Chaplains 385-1598 (Chaplains offer 100% confidentiality)
Military & Family Life Counselors
Tricare: Family members do not need referral for first 8 visits with a network provider (Find a Network Provider)
Military OneSource non-medical counseling services are available to provide help with short-term issues to those who are eligible. They offer the following service options: Face-to-Face Counseling, Telephonic Counseling, International Calling Options, Online Counseling.
24/7 National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255
– Airman & Family Readiness Center

Worried About Your Security Clearance?

The Standard Form 86, Questionnaire for National Security Positions, used to ask the applicant to acknowledge mental health care in the past seven years. It does not ask for treatment details if the care involved only marital, family, or grief counseling, not related to violence by the applicant, unless the treatment was court-ordered.

Officials said surveys have shown that troops feel if they answer “yes” to the question, they could jeopardize their security clearances, required for many occupations in the military.

Since April 18, 2008 applicants have not had to acknowledge care under the same conditions, nor if the care was related to service in a military combat zone. The revised wording has been distributed to the services and will be attached to the cover of the questionnaire. The revised question will not show up printed on the forms until the department depletes its pre-printed stock. Read the announcement from the Official Air Force website.

Learn how you can help promote mental, emotional, and behavioral well-being in the U.S. by downloading the Fact Sheet from SAMHSA.

Other Resources:

Suicide Prevention

Each year, suicide accounts for more than 38,000 deaths in the United States. In 2011, it was the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. The loss of someone to suicide resonates among family, friends, coworkers, and others in the community; it has been estimated that for each person who commits suicide, 5 to 10 other people are severely affected by the loss. Family and friends may experience a range of painful emotions, such as shock, anger, guilt, and depression. Suicide can occur across demographics, but certain groups are more at risk than the general population. Problems with intimate partner relationships and mental and physical health problems are factors that have been associated with the occurrence of suicide.

Suicide is devastating, but there are resources and information available to help prevent it.

Learn more to be the one who makes a difference.

Main Street Event flierTonight is an event in Main Street Square in Rapid City for the Mental Health Awareness and Suicide Prevention Day. Several Black Hills Mental Health providers will team up to provide information, inspiration and education on Mental Health Awareness and Suicide Prevention Day. The event will begin at 5 p.m. Governmental leaders and community residents will speak on mental health topics. Free food, a magician and performance by the drum troupe Sheltered Reality will add to the festivities. The event will conclude with a balloon release at 7 p.m.

Other Resources:

  • SuicidehotlineThe National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – A website that provides a downloadable wallet card with the Lifeline phone number and suicide warning signs in English and Spanish, as well as other materials for coping and caring for loved ones. The toll-free Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK [8255]) offers confidential help 24 hours a day to individuals considering suicide and their friends and family.
  • – A website that provides information from various government agencies on what bullying is, what cyberbullying is, who is at risk, and how to prevent and respond to bullying.
  • SAMHSA’s Mental Health Services Locator – A resource to help people find mental health services and resources in their communities.
  • National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention – A public-private collaboration SAMHSA has developed to help promote suicide prevention.
  • The Trevor Project – An organization that promotes acceptance of gay,      lesbian, bisexual, and questioning teens and helps to prevent suicide among those youth. The Trevor Helpline, which can be reached at 1-866-488-7386, is a 24-hour toll-free suicide helpline for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and questioning youth.
  • The Suicide Prevention Resource Center – A resource that provides access to the science and experience that can support efforts to develop programs, implement interventions, and promote policies to prevent suicide. Resources include information on school-based prevention programs, a best practices registry, state information and more.

Prevention of Alcohol Abuse

Alcohol abuse is a widespread issue in the United States. Even though it’s legal for individuals over age 21 to purchase and drink alcohol, many consume alcohol at levels that pose safety and health risks for themselves and others. Excessive alcohol use can cause serious problems and, for some, may lead to dependence. Alcohol abuse can affect people of all ages, and problems associated with alcohol dependence take a toll on the individual who drinks, as well as their families, children, workplace, and communities.

Learn more by downloading the Fact Sheet for Prevention of Alcohol Abuse in the U.S. [PDF] from SAMHSA

Part 1:

Part 2:

Other Resources:

Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse and Illicit Drug Use

Illicit drug use and the misuse of prescription medications are widespread problems in the United States. Approximately 23 million Americans aged 12 or older, or roughly 9 percent of the population in this age group, are current illicit drug users. These substances include marijuana/hashish, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, and inhalants — but these aren’t the only drugs that can harm people’s 110126-F-5858L-006health — as the 23 million also include Americans who engage in the nonmedical use of prescription-type pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants, and sedatives. Approximately 6 million Americans report that they currently use prescription drugs for nonmedical purposes.

Most young people refrain from using illicit drugs, but an estimated 1 in 10 youth aged 12 to 17 is a current illicit drug user. Drug use among people of all ages is dangerous because it can lead to addiction, reduced self-control and impaired decision-making, in addition to other serious physical consequences. Some drugs can alter the brain in ways that persist after the person has stopped taking drugs, and which may even be permanent.

Learn what you can do to help protect your loved ones and community by downloading the Fact Sheet for Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse and Illicit Drug Use in the U.S. [PDF] from SAMHSA

Other Resources:

  • SAMHSA’s Treatment Locator – A searchable directory of drug and alcohol treatment programs. The Treatment Locator shows the location of facilities around the country that treat drug abuse and alcohol problems.
  • “Above the Influence” campaignA resource from The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), the campaign website provides materials and information directed toward teens.
  • NIDA for Teens – A resource from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) that offers facts for teens about prescription drug abuse and illicit drug use. NIDA InfoFacts also provides updated information on the health effects of specific drugs, including club drugs and herbal mixtures.
  • Ignoring Instructions: The Importance of Using Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medications Properly – SAMHSA’s Road to Recovery Webcast gives an overview of prescription drug abuse and discusses people who are at risk.

Prevention of Underage Drinking

Although the legal drinking age in the U.S. is 21, one quarter of people aged 12 to 20 currently drink alcohol. Underage drinking is a problem shared by all communities: small metropolitan areas, large metropolitan areas, and nonmetropolitan areas have alcoholsimilar rates of underage alcohol use. Excessive drinking is part of the issue: among people aged 12 to 20 who drink alcohol, an estimated 6 million people participated in binge drinking at least once in the last 30 days, consuming five or more drinks in one sitting, and nearly 2 million are classified as heavy drinkers, binge drinking on 5 or more days in the past 30 days.

Underage alcohol use can have serious consequences for both young people’s health and the well-being of the community. The good news is that underage drinking can be prevented.

Learn more by downloading the Fact Sheet for Prevention of Underage Drinking in the U.S. [PDF] from SAMHSA.

Other Resources:

Prevention and Cessation of Tobacco Use

Smoking is the nation’s largest preventable cause of disease and death. Approximately one in four Americans — 68 million people — uses a tobacco product. The majority (83 percent) of tobacco users smoke cigarettes, and millions of people also use other types of tobacco, such as cigars, chewing tobacco, and snuff.

smokingThe consequences of using tobacco in any form can be devastating: increased risk of cancer, reproductive issues, heart disease, stroke, and death.  But prevention is possible and is as important now as ever before, especially among young people. It’s also important for individuals who currently smoke or use tobacco — even if only occasionally — to stop. The longer a person smokes, the more damage is done to the body. Quitting at any age has benefits.

Do your part to be tobacco-free, and take action to help family, friends, and members of your community do the same.

Learn more by downloading the Fact Sheet for Prevention and Cessation of Tobacco Use in the U.S. [PDF] from SAMHSA.

On Ellsworth AFB, contact the Health and Wellness Center (HAWC) at 385-2349 to find out what tobacco cessation programs they provide.

Other Resources:

Join us Online for 2013 National Prevention Week, May 12-18!

NPW-bannerIt’s up to all of us to promote mental, emotional, and behavioral well-being and prevent substance abuse in our communities. The choices we make each and every day matter – how are you making a difference through yours? Join the conversation and help other people at Ellsworth AFB  and in the local community make healthy choices during National Prevention Week 2013, May 12-18.

Join us online on each differently themed day and find information about each topic:

Sunday, May 12 – Prevention and Cessation of Tobacco Use
Monday, May 13 – Prevention of Underage Drinking
Tuesday, May 14 – Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse and Illicit Drug Use
Wednesday, May 15 – Prevention of Alcohol Abuse
Thursday, May 16 – Prevention of Suicide
Friday, May 17 – Promotion of Mental, Emotional and Behavioral Well-Being

Are you ready to make a promise to yourself? Take care of your mental, emotional, and behavioral well-being and stay free of substance abuse. Take the “Prevention Pledge” and learn more about SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week 2013 at

Sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration ( and the Airman & Family Readiness Center’s Personal & Work Life Program.