National Network of Libraries of Medicine
English Arabic Chinese (Simplified) French Hindi Japanese Korean Persian Portuguese Russian Spanish

Book Selections and Health Resources: Mental Health

Share Health Information

Although library staff cannot answer specific questions about medical conditions or treatment options, they can guide their community members to trusted health information so that they can make educated decisions about their health and that of their loved ones.

There's an NIH for that...and more

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is the lead federal agency for research on mental disorders. Its website offers basic information on a wide range of mental health topics. You also can download or order a variety of brochures and fact sheets, both in English and Spanish, to freely share.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. Use the NAMI Fact Sheet Library to share Infographics, or share inspiration and hope during Mental Health Month, or anytime, with ready-made social media messages.

Use MedlinePlus, from the National Library of Medicine (NLM), to find evidence-based information from a variety of resources on Mental Health and Behavior topics both in English and Spanish.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) provides resources for public libraries that align with National Health Observances throughout the calendar year. Providing programming resources is one way that the Community Engagement Network (CEN) supports communities with consumer health information and education in order to increase health literacy and raise awareness of the NIH All of Us Research Program. Find Mental Health Month Electronic Bulletin Slides and Social Medical Promotional Materials from the NNLM National Health Observances website.

Library Programming

Website Resources

Share mental health resources on your library website for people to find the help they need.

  • Mental Health First Aid offers an 8-hour course that gives people the skills to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The evidence behind the program demonstrates that it does build mental health literacy, helping the public identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illness. Find a Mental Health First Aid course near you using the search tool.
  • Mental Health Screening Tools
  • Mental Health and Addiction Insurance Help Portal
  • is sponsored by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). The web community is designed as a safe place for teens and young adults struggling with mental health conditions to express themselves. Sometimes that's writing and other times it's creating visuals. Either way, it's a place to share what's on your mind ... because you are not alone.

Graphic Medicine

Graphic Medicine refers to the use of graphic novels, comics, and visual storytelling in medical education, patient care, and other applications related to healthcare and the life sciences. The term was first coined by Ian Williams, M.D. for the website Just as there are many genres of books and film, there are many genres of comics and graphic novels. They may be fiction or nonfiction. They may be funny, sad, informative, or provocative. The illustrations may be elaborate while others are simple. However, they all use visual storytelling to connect with the reader.

What do Graphic Medicine books have in common? "...their ability to punch the reader in the face with a stark image that instantly registers, and with sparing text that is, due to the economy of a page, more like poetry than prose. You can also read a graphic memoir/novel in a single sitting in a way you can’t with even the most masterful prose books. When you’re in the hole, you may not have the energy to process big blocks of words. A comic, though, can be far more digestible."  Rachel Lindsay’s Rx Proves Comics Are Perfect for Tackling Mental Illness by Abraham Riesman. The New York Magazine: Cartoon. September 4, 2018.

NLM Exhibit

NLM Graphic Medicine Ill-Conceived exhibit logoFor programming ideas, use the National Library of Medicine Traveling Exhibit and educational website, Graphic Medicine: Ill-Conceived and Well-Drawn! and as well as Graphic Medicine & Health: Storytelling in support of the NNLM NER Graphic Medicine Initiative.

Picture Book

Book cover image of Meh, a young boy standing next to a cat at his feet with a dark gray background Sadness is an emotion that everyone feels at some time or another. But sometimes you might feel a sadness so long and so deep and dark that it seems impossible to find happiness. That kind of sadness is called depression. Meh is a wordless picture book about one boy's journey through depression. Discussion questions at the back of the book are intended for parents or teachers to discuss depression with children.

Meh: a story about depression | Deborah Malcolm | Thunderstone Books | 2015 | ISBN: 978-153411003