Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental illness. During the Month of May we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness and their families. One in 5 Americans is affected by mental health conditions. Stigma is toxic to their mental health because it creates an environment of shame, fear and silence that prevents many people from seeking help and treatment. The perception of mental illness won’t change unless we act to change it.
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease. Chronic means that the signs and symptoms tend to last longer than six weeks and often for many years. The Month of May is Lupus Awareness Month and I hope to raise awareness and educate others about this life changing disease. In a healthy immune system, the body produces antibodies which destroy unhealthy cells such as bacteria, viruses and foreign waste. However, lupus causes an overactive immune system to produce auto antibodies which attacks healthy body tissue. This can affect most parts of the body including any organ.