Dr. Matthew Stanley of Avera Behavioral Health in Sioux Falls says approximately 61.5 million Americans experience mental illness in a given year.

"If we look at all mental illnesses---nearly 1 out of 4 will suffer from a mental illness at some time in their lives.  We look at things like depression.  Every day, 1 out of 10 struggle with the disorder---about 20 percent of us.  That's really a high number."

In most cases, Dr. Stanley says recovery from mental illness isn't overnight.

"We are an instant gratification society.  Yet, dealing with mental illness takes time.  Even our most effective treatments for depression could take 4 to 6 weeks.  In some cases, it could take 3 to 6 months---and maybe up to a year before you feel fully recovered."

If you're battling mental illness, Dr. Stanley urges you to get help.

"Seek out your medical professional.  If you're uncomfortable seeing a psychiatrist or another mental health specialist, go to someone you trust and talk that person what's happening in your life.  All our doctors are taught about mental illness in medical school.  This is a medical disease."

Next week is National Mental Illness Awareness Week.

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