Shining a light in the dark corners of the mind - Encourages Awareness of Mental Health offers up a host of mental health assessments to set visitors on the path to awareness, education, and recovery.

MONTREAL, CANADA (MARKETWIRE) -- October 4, 2011, one of the web's foremost sources of psychological assessments, provides several mental health evaluations with the intention of coaxing visitors to shake off the stigma of mental health issues. With Mental Illness Awareness Week taking place October 2nd to 8th, PsychTests offers sufferers the opportunity to find both knowledge and relief.

When we find out that someone has a physical illness, there's a mixture of reactions. There's sympathy, worry, concern; we may wonder what this person eats on a daily basis, whether he or she exercises, and if there's a family history of this illness. Ultimately however, there is at least a basic sense of acceptance that these things happen - that it's "normal". Mental health diagnoses, on the other hand, often emit a different, more notorious vibe. If someone is diagnosed with depression they are often told by others to "just get over it"; if someone is diagnosed with anxiety they are told to "relax" and to "stop making a big deal of things - everyone gets nervous"; if a diagnosis is more extreme, as in cases of schizophrenia, bipolar, or OCD, a person may simply be written off as "just not normal".

Mental illness still wears stigma like a glove. To seek treatment for a psychological issue is often just as distressing, if not more so, than the actual illness itself. So people with these issues tread through life feeling empty, fearful, paranoid, or miserable, accepting that this is just the hand they've been dealt with. This is one of the many reasons why mental health awareness is so highly encouraged, and why sites like promote mental health assessments.

"Awareness is the first step on the journey to recovery," explains Dr. Jerabek, president of the company. "By providing online assessments that screen for different mental health issues, we help people answer the questions and worries, like 'Is what I'm feeling normal?'. For example, a little anxiety before a presentation is fine; feeling sad after losing a loved one is understandable. Having a panic attack because you have to go grocery shopping or thinking that the world is better off without you is not - these are legitimate concerns that should not be discounted or dismissed."

In addition to standard evaluations that assess depression and anxiety symptoms, PsychTests offers tests that screen for anger management issues, burnout, eating disorders, and Type A personality. Broader tests, like the Coping and Stress Management Skills Test determine whether a person uses healthy techniques to deal with pressure, while PsychTests' Mental Health Assessment, which is offered free of charge, is a comprehensive and overarching test that screens for over 70 different mental health issues.

"The World Health Organization estimated that 1 in every 4 people develops at least one mental health disorders at some stage in their life - and that mental illness is supposedly more common than cancer, heart disease, and diabetes," points out Dr. Jerabek. "Such staggering numbers may be partially due to a trend to over-diagnose and peg relatively minor or temporary problems as psychiatric disorders. Nonetheless, a mental health issue is not as 'abnormal' as some people may think it is. The bottom line is, many people who grapple with psychological problems could get better and achieve a better quality of life if they just put aside their stereotypes and learn what they can do to feel better."

The goal of PsychTests during Mental Illness Awareness Week is simple: "What we offer is empowerment and knowledge, which can be difficult to come by when someone is suffering and doesn't know where to turn to," states Dr. Jerabek. "Our tests are not the final word - and we encourage users to seek a full diagnosis if our tests do indeed highlight concerns - but they do shed light in dark corners. The goal of these mental health tests isn't to point out what's wrong with you, but to determine why you are not living a life of joy, to your fullest potential."

For those who wish to assess their mental health, PsychTests offers the following assessments:

About Psychtests AIM Inc.

PsychTests AIM Inc. originally appeared on the internet scene in 1996. Since its inception, it has become a pre-eminent provider of psychological assessment products and services to human resource personnel, therapists, academics, researchers and a host of other professionals around the world. PsychTests AIM Inc. staff is comprised of a dedicated team of psychologists, test developers, researchers, statisticians, writers, and artificial intelligence experts. The company's research division, Plumeus Inc., is supported in part by Research and Development Tax Credit awarded by Industry Canada.

Ilona Jerabek, Ph.D., President
Psychtests AIM Inc.