During these difficult times, Mental Health America (MHA) wants Americans to know there are tools that can buffer the effects of stress and help people better cope with the many challenges they face.

With increasing economic troubles piled on the stress of work and family demands, more and more Americans are suffering. In fact, 58 percent of Americans reported struggling in their lives at the end of 2008, according to the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. This represents an increase of more than 22 million Americans who reported struggling earlier this year.

During these difficult times, Mental Health America (MHA) wants Americans to know that there are tools that can buffer the effects of stress and help people better cope with the many challenges they face. This May, in honor of Mental Health Month, MHA is launching the Live Your Life Well campaign to provide people with 10 specific, research-based tools that can combat stress and promote health and well being.

"The economic crisis has added to the stress that American families are facing and many people may be experiencing depression and anxiety as well," said Laura Moskow Sigal, Mental Health America of Franklin County's executive director. "People tell us they often feel hopeless, but there are tools that they can use to face difficult times with greater resiliency."

The heart of the campaign is the Live Your Life Well website (http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/go/live-your-life-well/) that provides 10 researched-based, straightforward tools and ways to apply them in everyday life. From relaxation techniques to journaling exercises to simple ways to get better sleep and improve eating habits, the site offers a wide range of resources to build resiliency and well-being. The 10 tools of Live Your Life Well also include information on seeking the help of a mental health professional.

"Research is clear that mental health is essential for overall health and well-being," said Moskow Sigal. "This new campaign puts supportive and informative content together in one place. There's no other website or public education effort like it."

More details on each of the tools are available on the campaign website, which is free to the public at http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/go/live-your-life-well/. Additionally, people in central Ohio can MHAFC for more information, locate mental health resources or help find a mental health professional, by calling (614) 221-1441, or visiting www.mhafc.org.

Celebrating 100 years of mental health advocacy, Mental Health America is the country's leading nonprofit dedicated to helping all people live mentally healthier lives. MHAFC is proud and honored to be one of MHA's largest affiliates.