Behavioral health experts in Orangeburg County say mental health stigma affects people’s willingness to seek help.

Orangeburg County, South Carolina — Mental health services are available in Orangeburg County. Behavioral health director Stacey says people aren’t asking for help even though they need it.

“I think there is help, but we need to break down the stigma so that people feel safe and secure.”

Graham says some of the most common mental health issues are related to depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. She cites financial burden as a major contributor to the decline in mental health in Orangeburg and beyond.

“For anyone dealing with mental health disorders or emotional distress of any kind, don’t think you have to suffer alone. There’s help out there. If you take the first step, I We’ll do all we can. You,” said Graham.

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Hope Birch recalls needing help after her son died in June. The effects of her grief that she felt began to affect her mental health. She had stopped eating, was bedridden and had no energy for her daily activities, she says. Eventually she turned to alcohol.

She said she sought treatment at a behavioral health facility in the Lowcountry.

“It’s okay to go through, but at the same time you can get help because if it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t be here. I couldn’t be here to share my testimony.” “I will,” said Birch.

Resources available in Orangeburg include the Family Health Center, the Regional Medical Center, and the Orangeburg Area Mental Health Center.

The Family Health Center in Orangeburg can be reached at (803) 531-6900.

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