Robin Williams' death shines light on depression, addiction reso - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Robin Williams' death shines light on depression, addiction resources

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The news of Robin Williams' death has shocked and stunned the entire country. The news of Robin Williams' death has shocked and stunned the entire country.
Martine Siegel (Source: WAVE 3 News) Martine Siegel (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Paula Porter (Source: WAVE 3 News) Paula Porter (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Dr. Ora Frankel (Source: WAVE 3 News) Dr. Ora Frankel (Source: WAVE 3 News)
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – The news of Robin Williams' death has shocked and stunned the entire country. Investigators said on Tuesday, the Oscar-winning actor died from asphyxia by hanging.

The comedian had battled addiction for decades and recently was suffering from severe depression according to those close to him.

[RELATED STORY: Hanging confirmed as Robin Williams' cause of death]

Mental health care experts say if you notice a sense of hopelessness or despair the best thing you can do first is start an open dialogue and talk about the different resources out there.

The Archdiocese of Louisville realizes a lot of the time church leaders become the first responders when a person battling depression reaches out for help.

“We're in a unique position to reflect God's love and compassion in someone's time of suffering,” said Archdiocese of Louisville Director of Counseling Martine Siegel.

Siegel says often help will go beyond the church. She says pastors and school staff are fully trained to know how to handle different situations.

“We have a system of referrals, we can work quickly depending on the level of severity of what they need to get them in to see somebody,” said Siegel.

Robin Williams' death shines a light on how difficult depression and substance abuse can be to overcome. It's a harsh reality The Morton Center tries to combat on a daily basis.

“It is tragic when somebody fights the way he has, and whether it was depression or addiction, either one it just got the best of him,” said The Morton Center Clinical Manager Paula Porter.

Porter says there is hope.

“We see a lot of successes, part of it is that we work with folks long term,” said Porter.

Six months ago, Dr. Ora Frankel opened The Couch, a walk in or by appointment immediate care center for mental health. It's one of the first of its kind in the country. She hopes depression will someday lose the stigma and be treated as any other illness.

“If you find a good psychiatrist who will work hard with you, you can get answers and you can find a solution to the problem without having to resort to suicide,” said Frankel.

For more information on the Archdiocese of Louisville Counseling Services, click here.

For more information on The Morton Center, click here.

For more information on The Couch, click here. 

Anyone battling mental heath issues can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. 

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