2018 Out of the Darkness Walk #MentalHealthAwareness #StopSuicide

This past weekend, we participated in and volunteered for the AFSP New Jersey Chapter of the Out of The Darkness Walk. This walk helped raise awareness for mental health and to fight suicide. As of today it raised $122,000 and counting. There were over 1,100 participants walk in Verona Park alone – a great turnout.
walk to end suicide
Ever walker and donor is helping fund the research to help us better understand the complexities of suicide and how best to prevent it. You are making free education and resources possible for the community. You are the voice that advocates on behalf of those who can’t. And you support programs for those who have been touched by suicide. Most importantly, you are breaking the stigma surrounding mental health and suicide by standing up for this important issue, and showing those affected that they are not alone.
Please note that you can donate to the cause.  Please feel free to donate here! Remember, 84 cents of every dollar donated will go to suicide prevention.
Thank you for all you do to fight suicide and raise awareness.

4 Ways that hormones can impact your mental health

Mental illnesses have in the past 30 years shot up in men and women as well as children exceeding 8 million having a prescription in the U.S. Lifestyle and food culture have a huge impact on hormonal imbalances which is associated with mental health and here is how.

Adrenal Issues

The two stress hormones; adrenaline and cortisol can have a significant impact on your mental health if not they happen not to be balanced. This can result to one feeling anxious, depressed or even lacking sleep. Additionally, when in excess and when low, the stress hormones can have different mental impacts on you. When in excess, you will experience irritation, anxiety and nervousness. When significantly low, you experience tiredness, depression, moodiness, sluggishness and may have a difficult time concentrating. However, you can manage stress through the multiple known ways in order to keep your cortisol and adrenaline levels in check and this will in turn lower the psychological effect risks linked with the two hormones.

Estrogen and Mental Health

Every month during menstrual cycle, women often deal with issues that are quite out of their hand due to Effects of Estrogen Deficiencies and this often results to premenstrual syndrome (PMS). During a woman’s menstruation period, estrogen levels are low. Estrogen has an impact on serotonin and dopamine, which are chemicals linked to the brain, and are associated with depression as well as psychosis. According to statistics, 80% of women experience both mental and physical issues which are as a result of hormonal imbalances. Through a recent study, health professionals revealed Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), a condition that causes seasonal affective disorder, anxiety and severe depression as a result of hormonal shifts.

Also, while pregnant and during post-partum, women experience varying moods and emotions, and later in life during menopause, their hormonal changes result to brain fog and reduced sexual drive. If you thought men don’t experience mood swings and depression, they do: when estrogen levels are too high.

Thyroid and Mental Health

Inflammation and chemical stressors are the major causes of all thyroid-related problems. Thyroid issues can result from a leaky gut; when the body begins attacking and destroying all kinds of tissues, the thyroid included. If uncontrolled, thyroid activity has two extremes; hyperthyroidism, when it is overactive and hypothyroidism, when it is underactive. During hyperthyroidism, insomnia, depression, panic attacks, mood swings and anxiety may result and unfortunately in the past, women have been misdiagnosed with anorexia and panic disorder when they actually suffered from overactive thyroid. Hypothyroidism on the other hand may cause; fatigue, depression, moodiness and in rare cases anxiety.

Interference of Gut Secretion of Neurotransmitters

The gut contains multiple hormones and bacteria which act as signal transmitters. They signal digestion responses, immune responses and most importantly production and release of serotonin and dopamine. The signal for serotonin use -which is responsible for digestion, mood, appetite, social behavior, memory, sleep and libido- is through microbiome, a bacteria found in the gut. Dopamine, although in relatively small quantities is linked with happiness and contentment.

Gut issues are mostly as a result of antibiotics, which kill bacteria including these important ones. Microbiome takes more than three years to re-populate once they are severely damaged and even killed by one round of antibiotics. Due to this, it is advisable to avoid antibiotics not unless you have to take them, and if you do, make sure you eat fermented foods and take probiotic supplements.


To Write Love on Her Arms Founder Jamie Tworkwoski To Speak At NCSP’s “Rally To Prevent Suicide” In Washington, D.C. this Saturday, April 21st

To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) announces founder Jamie Tworkowski will speak at the National Council for Suicide Prevention’s (NCSP) first national Rally To Prevent Suicide this Saturday, April 21st from 5:30pm-6:30pm on the West front steps of Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Alongside the NCSP, the National Council for Behavioral Health, the American Psychological Association, the Cohen Veterans Network, and other leading health organizations, TWLOHA will add their voices to the call for Congress and the President to make suicide prevention a public health priority. For more information, please visit: www.rallytopreventsuicide.org.
On the upcoming event, TWLOHA founder Jamie Tworkowski shares: “We’re so excited to participate in the Rally to Prevent Suicide. It’s an honor to stand alongside so many organizations and individuals who are working hard to save lives. We’re proud to represent the TWLOHA community on Saturday in Washington, and you’re certainly invited to join us!
Between 1999 and 2015 suicide claimed 604,878 American lives and an estimated 15 million more attempts. Current data indicates increases in middle-age adult suicides and in youth (ages 5-14) suicides reaching a 40-year high, compounded by 20 veteran suicides every day and additional active duty military suicides daily.
Everyone is welcome to attend the Rally to Prevent Suicideand show their support for improving the mental health of all Americans and preventing the tragedy of suicide. Attendees will be able to hear from top leaders in the field of mental health and suicide prevention and listen to stories of hope and resilience from individuals who have struggled personally and families who have lost loved ones to suicide.
To Write Love on Her Arms is a nonprofit dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. It exists to encourage, inform, inspire, and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery. Since its start in 2006, TWLOHA has donated over $2 million directly into treatment and recovery and answered over 200,000 messages from over 100 countries.
This past September, TWLOHA wrapped its 6th annual campaign to honor National Suicide Prevention Week and World Suicide Prevention Day. The organization was overwhelmed by the amount of love and support shown during this year’s campaign, titled, “Stay. Find what you are made for,”during which over $103.5K was raised for treatment and counseling. The campaign was shared by supporters all over the world, including NBA player Kyle Korver, US Women’s National Soccer Team stars Alex MorganChristen Press, and Ashlyn Harris, actress Shantel VanSanten, Switchfoot’s Jon ForemanDustin Kensrue of Thrice, actress and singer Debby Ryan, The Ready Set’s Jordan Witzrigreuter, and Jess Bowen of The Summer Set, all of whom were featured in a special video message directed by Dustin Miller, a Florida-based filmmaker and longtime TWLOHA collaborator: https://youtu.be/37cB2CQt_YA.
WHAT: “Rally To Prevent Suicide”
WHO: National Council For Suicide Prevention, TWLOHA Founder Jamie Tworkowski, and more
WHERE: Capitol Hill | West Front Steps | Washington, D.C.
WHEN: Saturday, April 21st | 5:30pm-6:30pm
National Council for Suicide Prevention:
The National Council for Suicide Prevention, a national coalition of seven leading nonprofits working to end suicide in the United States, works to advance suicide prevention through leadership, advocacy, and acting as a collective voice for those impacted by suicide.


to write love on her arms
On SaturdayApril 14, 2018, To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) will host its 6th Annual Run For It 5k at the David R. Schechter Center in Satellite Beach, FL. The Run For It 5k started in 2013 as a chance to reach the local community and share a message of hope and help in a new way. Since then, TWLOHA has witnessed hundreds of people running for health, recovery, or in memory of a loved one. Additionally, the Run For It 5k has evolved from several hundred people in Satellite Beach, Florida, to thousands running in all 50 states, and over 10 different countries across the globe.
“I am always in awe of the dedication and passion so many bring to the Run For It 5k every year, from rallying people to create a team to fundraising for hope and help. Whether you’re participating for the first time or the sixth time, we invite you to move for something that matters.” said Elizabeth Wilder, Race Director and TWLOHA staff member.
This year’s local event will offer a delicious pancake breakfast for all registered runners served by Backwater, Downtown Melbourne’s hottest restaurant! TWLOHA will also be presenting awards, supplying family-friendly activities, and offering dozens of raffle prizes to all registered participants as well.
To register for the Run For It 5k, sign up online at RunForIt5k.com.
Individual registration costs $27 ($32 on race day). For teams (four runners or more), registration costs $24 per individual-team registration will be unavailable on race day. Children 11 years and under are $17 ($22 on race day). Pancake breakfast is included for all registered runners but meals can be purchased for $5 by friends and family.
For more information about the Run For It 5k, or if you are interested in becoming a sponsor or volunteer, please contact RunForIt5k@twloha.com.

TWLOHA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. TWLOHA has donated more than $2 million directly into treatment and recovery and responded to more than 200,000 messages from people in more than 100 countries. For more information, visit twloha.com.

Run For It 5k Details
●TWLOHA is hosting its 6th Annual Run For It 5k fundraiser on Saturday, April 14, 2018, at the David R. Schechter Center in Satellite Beach, FL.
● Race begins at 8:00 a.m.
● There is a virtual component to the race, which means people can participate in their own communities.
● Early registration costs $27 for individuals and ends April 13. After, registration is $32. Team registration costs $24 per runner on or before April 13. There must be a minimum of four runners per team. Team sign-up is not available on race day.
●  Maintaining physical health is integral to maintaining positive mental health.
●  TWLOHA is a nonprofit that presents hope and finds help for people struggling with mental illnesses.