SOURCE: California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

October 03, 2007 10:00 ET

Healthy Living: Seeking Help for a Mental Health Illness

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - October 3, 2007) - To acknowledge World Mental Health Day, October 10, the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) reminds Californians that mental health is as important as physical health and should be not overlooked. Many face the stigma of seeking help for a mental health illness, such as anxiety, addiction, depression, and self-esteem or anger management.

Therapy manages a mental illness by exploring alternative ways to deal with life's challenges. A balanced healthy lifestyle can reduce anxiety levels, increase energy and provide a sense of fulfillment. To select a licensed professional, CAMFT provides these guidelines on how to choose a therapist:

--  Referrals from other professionals. Doctors, lawyers, massage
    therapists, clergy members and teachers commonly hear about the therapists
    in their areas and can often assist in your search.
--  Word of mouth is also a great way to obtain referrals. If someone you
    know has had success with a particular therapist, it is possible that you
    might, too.
--  Visit California's online resource,, to read
    information about how to care for your mental health, and utilize the free
    directory to locate and be matched with a highly qualified licensed
    therapist using a zip code, name, location or clinical issue.

Psychotherapy can also help ease common sources of stress, including family problems, heavy workloads or having to provide extensive care for a loved one or aging parent. There are a variety of services available and popular techniques include:

--  Cognitive Therapy: Develops coping strategies by focusing on unhealthy
    thought patterns and core beliefs to encourage positive, healthy and
    effective thought processes.
--  Behavioral Therapy: A technique that focuses on replacing undesirable
    behavioral patters with rewarding behavior.
--  Group Therapy: Individuals discuss their thoughts, feelings and
    experiences in a group setting that helps relate to others with the same
--  Play Therapy: Includes a variety of techniques to help children
    express their emotions by playing with dolls or toys, painting, sculpting,
    or other activities.

On World Mental Health Day, Californians are encouraged to assess their mental health by locating and consulting with a Marriage and Family Therapist to discuss their mental health needs. To learn more about mental health conditions and the services offered by Marriage and Family Therapists, visit California's online mental health resource,


The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, with 27 chapters throughout the state, is an independent professional organization, representing the interests of licensed Marriage and Family Therapists. CAMFT provides as a resource to the public looking for Marriage and Family Therapists located in California. For more information about CAMFT, please call (858) 292-2638 or visit

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Hillary Angel
    Phone: (909) 390-1239
    E-mail: Email Contact