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For much of the North American public, mental health and its extremely negative effects on people’s lives remains an uncomfortable topic of discussion. But the numbers can’t be ignored: according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, about 1 in 5 American adults experience mental illness in any given year; 1 in 25 adults experience a serious mental illness that limits one or more major life activities, and over half of the 20 million substance abusers in the U.S. suffered from a co-occurring mental illness.

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