Health Insights

Making Moves Toward Better Mental Health

May. 3, 2024

May is Mental Health Month, and this year's theme, "Take a Moment," emphasizes the importance of self-care for good mental health. 

We can’t often control what is happening around us, but we can foster positive mental health by choosing how we respond.

Did you know:

  • 1 in 5 people will face a mental health issue within any given year, highlighting the prevalence of mental illness.
  • Nearly half of Americans will meet the criteria for a diagnosable mental health disorder at some point in their lives.
  • Over a quarter of adults with serious mental health problems also struggle with alcohol and/or drug use, underscoring the interconnection between mental and behavioral health.
  • It is never too soon to seek mental health treatment. Getting help early can save lives.

Here are a few simple, daily steps to boost your mental wellbeing:

  • List 3-5 things you’re grateful for each day, to nurture a positive outlook.
  • Engage in positive affirmations to strengthen mental resilience.
  • Take screen breaks to provide essential stress relief and prevent mental fatigue.
  • Initiate conversations about mental health to foster understanding and social connections.

In addition, there are many resources that UC Health offers, as well as resources from Mental Health America. 

Osher Center for Integrative Health at the University of Cincinnati


Integrative Health combines conventional medicine with evidence-based complementary therapies, such as mindfulness approaches, acupuncture, massage therapy, and yoga therapy. The Osher Center for Integrative Health at the University of Cincinnati offers many therapies at no cost and others at a minimal cost.

Lifestyle Medicine Consultation: One-on-one discussion with a physician, focusing on your overall wellness, health history, physical activity, sleep, and stress reduction techniques. Your physician will guide you through developing an individualized plan for your health and wellness.

Group Medical Visits: Group medical visits take a group approach to healthcare. Small groups of patients meet regularly in addition to one-on-one assessments with their providers. Group visits allow patients to become more informed and confident in making healthy choices, all while building a community and support system.

Acupuncture Therapy: Acupuncture has been shown to help with many conditions, including pain syndromes, cancer treatment-related side effects, gastrointestinal disorders, addictions, and headaches.

Massage Therapy: Massage therapy uses touch to promote relaxation for physical and psychological healing. A licensed massage therapist works one-on-one with a patient to manipulate muscles and tissues of the body to aid in healing and recovery.

Mind-Body Therapies: Mind-body therapies are designed for you to pause and practice mindfulness. The benefits of a regular mindfulness practice can include decreased stress and anxiety, increased focus and concentration, and improved sleep, communication, relationships, and physical well-being.

Movement-Based Therapies: Movement-based therapies including tai chi and yoga incorporate controlled breathing – which helps reduce stress and anxiety.

Culinary Medicine: Culinary medicine is an educational and nutritional approach to improving eating behaviors and overall health by focusing on food shopping, storage, and meal preparation skills.

Music Therapy: Listening to and making music can help us change our emotional state, improve our moods, and even help us manage stress. Music is truly one of the only mediums that gives our brain a full workout. It requires us to be present with ourselves while encouraging us to be in relationships with others, both key components of healthy lifestyles and wellness.

For more information, or to sign up for a class, visit

a graphic representation of mental health with a side view silhouette of a head, where the brain area is dynamically assembling from puzzle pieces in a dramatic red and black gradient. Set this against a pure white background for maximum contrast, with each piece fitting snugly to symbolize the path to recovery and understanding.

UC Health Mobile Crisis Team

The UC Health Mobile Crisis Team is a joint program of the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and the Hamilton County Mental Health and Recovery Services Board.

The purpose of the Mobile Crisis Team is to assess adults and children in the community (Hamilton County only) who are experiencing a mental health crisis. They are available 24/7 and support law enforcement and emergency responders to provide appropriate intervention to these individuals. Mobile crisis teams respond to calls, assess the nature of the crisis, and work to calm and diffuse the situation using de-escalation techniques. They provide brief supportive treatment and technical assistance and arrange for further treatment with mental health service clinicians.

To request the services of this program, call 513-584-5098.

Mood Disorders Center

Mood disorders, such as depression and bipolar disorders, can have a serious impact on individuals and families. In the Mood Disorders Center, UC Health researchers work closely with internationally recognized experts to discover early diagnoses and tailor treatment plans for each patient.

As a recognized center of excellence, we specialize in advanced care for complicated mood disorders that occur with other mental health issues, including substance use disorders. We offer outpatient care for all types of mood disorders, including options for treatment-resistant depression.

The conditions that we treat in the Mood Disorders Center include:

There are many treatments that we provide for the above conditions, including:

  • Medications
  • Individual therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)- Teaches you to manage anxiety. It does this by helping you understand how you think and act when you’re anxious.
  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation- TMS is offered as an innovative treatment that delivers positive results to patients coping with treatment-resistant depression. It is a non-invasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain.
  • Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)- ECT is most commonly given when patients have a severe depressive illness, mania, or some form of schizophrenia. ECT is often given when patients have not responded to other treatments when other treatments appear to be less safe or difficult to tolerate. With this treatment, a small amount of electricity is applied to the scalp and produces a seizure in the brain. Because the patient is asleep under general anesthesia, the procedure is virtually painless.
  • Intranasal Ketamine Treatment- A dissociative anesthetic that is administered through the nose and is absorbed into the bloodstream. It can quickly improve medication-resistant depression symptoms in adults.
  • Intranasal Esketamine Treatment- Eskteamine is an altered form of ketamine.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call 513-585-MOOD (6663).

Stress Center

The Stress Center at UC Health is dedicated to caring for families living with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our goal is to decrease the negative impact of PTSD and help local families resume a healthy life. We want to ensure families can access the resources and support they need to cope after a traumatic event.

PTSD is a mental health condition that may develop after a person is exposed to a traumatic event(s), such as abuse, assault, or the threat of death. Individuals diagnosed with PTSD are at high risk for depression/anxiety, substance abuse, and poor physical health. PTSD can also affect a person’s work, family, and social life. The center brings together clinicians at UC Health and the Cincinnati Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center to optimize treatment.

We work with individuals and families to create a treatment program specific to their needs. The initial evaluation includes a thorough interview, evaluation, and testing. A comprehensive evaluation for:

  • PTSD
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Coping
  • Cognitive distortions
  • Sleep
  • Guilt
  • Family functioning

Our center emphasizes the use of evidence-based psychotherapy to treat people with PTSD. In working with a therapist, you and/or your loved ones will learn the strategies and tools you need to deal with stress and the problematic thoughts and behaviors created by the traumatic event.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call 513-585-5872.

Addiction Sciences

Substance dependence is a chronic, treatable medical disease that affects both the brain and behavior. Our experienced clinicians offer help through assessments, individualized treatment plans, and evidence-based treatment strategies.

The addiction sciences program offers several services:

  • Opioid Treatment Program- It is estimated that 2.5 million Americans suffer from opioid dependency. Our experienced clinicians use pharmacologic and behavioral treatment approaches to provide methadone treatment in a safe and effective way.
  • Medically Managed Outpatient Treatment Services- Thanks to research, there are several effective medications that can be used for treating substance use disorders, particularly for opioids, alcohol, and tobacco. Our Outpatient Treatment Services use these effective medications whenever possible.
  • Addiction Research- Researchers at UC Health Addiction Sciences are nationally recognized as experts in their field, and our researchers have been conducting trials locally and nationally since 1997. Our patients often participate in local clinical trials and are among the first in the world to benefit from new treatment strategies.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call 513-585-5872.

Mental Health America         

In addition to the services provided at UC Health, there are also many helpful tools offered through Mental Health America (MHA). MHA offers screenings that are free, anonymous, and quick and can help you understand whether a person is experiencing symptoms of a mental health condition. To find a screening visit the MHA screening webpage.

Note: Online screening tools are meant to be a quick snapshot of your mental health. These tools should not take the place of meeting with a mental health professional.

Mental Health America (MHA) also provides free access to webinars about mental health. You can sign up for future webinars or watch recordings of webinars that have already occurred. You can find the entire webinar schedule on the Mental Health America webinar page.

Mental health can affect anyone and is just as crucial to a person as their physical health. All of these resources can go a long way in helping with mental health. If you or a loved one are struggling, hope and healing are within reach:

  • 988: Suicide & Crisis Lifeline
  • 513-584-8577: UC Health Psychiatric Emergency Services
  • 513-584-5098: UC Health Mobile Crisis Team (Hamilton County Residents)