Facilities working to combat mental health issue

Facilities working to combat mental health issue

 

 

LUBBOCK, Texas - Recent mass shootings have raised questions regarding mental health  and cases have become more prevalent in Lubbock.

"We've seen a much higher call volume over the past several years. We have also seen a higher level of acuity. People are coming to us a lot sicker than what they used to," Licensed Professional Counselor, Bobby Carter said. 

Carter said after tragedies, like mass shootings, people are quick to assume mental health is is the issue.

"You can go back and you can look at twitter, look at facebook, look at the way they interacted with people and things that they've done and that should be significant warning signs for people and a lot of times I see these warning signs go unnoticed," Carter said.

When working with young children, he said they think shooting people because they're mad is normal. 

"They don't have the capabilities to carry out a shooting, but that's kind of their first thing that they kind of go to," Carter said.

To change this trend, a psychiatric assessment is held for children and people of all ages, to come up with an appropriate treatment plan. 

"We have the ability to work with people on an outpatient basis, we do like to look at the most, least restrictive environment possible to stabilize someone in a crisis episode, but not all the time that is necessarily appropriate," Carter said. 

That plan may include more than just medication. 

"If you get to the point that you want to go into a public area and commit an act where you want to kill a high amount of people, there's more to that than just mental illness to me. There is a certain degree of anger that's involved with that situation. There's a certain degree of hate, so not only do I feel medication would be beneficial, but I also feel that intense therapy, counseling would be very very beneficial," Carter said.

If you know someone could be a danger to themselves or others, he said, do something. 

"The worst thing you can do is do nothing," Carter said.

He said, intervening could save a life. 

Whenever you find yourself in a crisis situation, call StarCare's Crisis Line anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 806-740-1414. When you call, the person answering the phone may refer you to other resources in the community that can best meet your needs.  If your call is an emergency, a crisis team may be sent out to help manage your situation.  If necessary, 911 emergency services may also be contacted to respond to your crisis.

For more information on StarCare Specialty Health Systems, go to http://www.starcarelubbock.org/about_us/.

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