Skip to Main Content

Student to Student

This guide was created to help students navigate the beginning of their educational career at GHC from a former GHC student! Here you will find how to's such as connecting to GHC's internet, the basics of how to use Microsoft, and much more.

Mental Health

This tab is a place to amplify the stories and voices of those with mental illness and the stigmas they face. It is a place to learn and understand the role that our society has played in perpetuating mental iIlness-phobias. Ultimately, this is a space to work to prevent hate and misunderstandings about those with mental illnesses from continuing.

This LibGuide was created for those who wish to educate themselves through books, videos, and other resources on important social justice issues, and the viewpoints of marginalized populations. While the GHC library staff and faculty have made a substantial effort to provide numerous resources, this is not a comprehensive guide. If there are resources you consider irrelevant, or resources that were left out that you feel should be included, please contact us:


What is mental illness?

Mental illnesses are conditions that affect a person’s thinking, feeling, mood or behavior, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia. Such conditions may be occasional or long-lasting (chronic) and affect someone’s ability to relate to others and function each day.


What is mental health?

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make healthy choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.


Although the terms are often used interchangeably, poor mental health and mental illness are not the same things. A person can experience poor mental health and not be diagnosed with a mental illness. Likewise, a person diagnosed with a mental illness can experience periods of physical, mental, and social well-being.


Mental Illness and Adults

  • In 2015, there were an estimated 43.4 million adults –about 1 in 5 Americans aged 18 or older – with a mental illness within the previous year.
  • In 2015, there were an estimated 9.8 million adults – about 1 in 25 Americans aged 18 or older – with serious mental illness. “Serious mental illness” is defined as individuals experiencing within the past year a mental illness or disorder with serious functional impairment that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities.

Mental Illness and Children and Teens

  • Just over 20% – or 1 in 5 – children, have had a seriously debilitating mental disorder.
  • Half of all chronic mental illness begins by age 14 and three-quarters begin by age 24.


  • Number of visits to physician offices with mental disorders as the primary diagnosis: 65.9 million.
  • In 2015, 75% of children aged 4 to 17 received treatment for their mental disorders within the past year.

Impact of Mental Illness

  • Suicide, which is often associated with symptoms of mental illness, is the 10th leading cause of death the U.S. and the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 15-34.
  • Serious mental illness costs in the United States amount to $193.2 billion in lost earnings per year.
  • Mood disorders, including major depression, dysthymic disorder, and bipolar disorder, are the third most common cause of hospitalization in the United States. for both youth and adults aged 18 to 44.
  • Individuals living with serious mental illness face an increased risk of physical health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, and HIV (human immunodeficiency virus, the virus that causes AIDS).
  • U.S. adults living with serious mental illness die on average 25 years earlier than others, largely due to treatable medical conditions.

Read more here:

External Resources (outside of GHC)

We don't have these books at GHC, but you can check with your local public library:

no one cares about crazy people

All the Things We Never Knew

Understanding Mental Illness: A Comprehensive Guide to Mental Health Disorders for Family and Friends

Mental Health in Our Own Words

Living with a Mental Disorder

We All Have Mental Health

©2023 Georgia Highlands College |