May is Mental Health Awareness Month!
Mental health is essential to everyone's overall health and well-being, and mental illnesses are common and treatable. But people experience symptoms of mental illnesses differently-and some engage in potentially dangerous or risky behaviors to avoid or cover up symptoms of a potential mental health problem.
Unfortunately infants and children are not excluded from mental health issues. Zero to Three, the National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families, defines infant mental health as a continuum, ranging from a state affected by social and emotional problems and disorders to complete social and emotional wellness-an ability to form satisfying relationships with others and to play, communicate, learn, and experience the full spectrum of human emotions. Infant mental health develops in the context of family, community, and cultural expectations for very young children
From birth through 5 years, children will reach milestones in how they play, learn, behave and interact. A significant delay in any of these areas could be a sign of a problem. The good news is the earlier it's recognized the more you can do to help the child reach his/her full potential. Z Five is a Mecklenburg County collaborative of Mental Health Specialist who work together to identify services for young children.