Discussion Of Community Mental Health Writing Sample


Nicotine addiction is a prevalent mental issue among black youth in America. The causes include low social economic statuses and racial discrimination. This intervention program aims to assemble a team of youth addicted to nicotine in Iowa for intervention. The team is further subdivided into smaller identification categories for easier intersession. The project facilitates development of program planning skills and strategies of approaching vulnerable populations. The development of multidisciplinary integration skills will facilitate a more comprehensive intervention approach to the community group.

The action plan includes contacting various healthcare professionals and linking them to the group processes and developing group sessions. Overall, the strategy is patient centered as it is holistic addressing psychological, social, cognitive, physical, spiritual, and social cultural dimensions.


Nicotine addiction is a chemical dependency mental health disorder used as a life coping option. Young adolescents are the most vulnerable because of the enticement to discover things. A chemical dependency state is when a person psychologically and physically craves a drug (Morrison-Valfre, 2017). Most adolescents vulnerable to chemical dependency are those with a history of abuse and these teens progress in four phases, including, “experimentation, active seeking, preoccupation, and burnout” (Morrison-Valfre, 2017, p.163). A chemically dependent teen requires mental health intervention, particularly focusing on assisting these youngsters substitute the chemicals with better coping skills. In this assessment, a community of young black Americans is selected and assessed for their nicotine additions to develop action plans and a mental health intervention.

Rationale for the Target Population

Blacks comprise the highest population of cigarette smokers in the US. Several vulnerabilities among the black ethnicities expose them to cigarette consumption and a variety of physical health challenges. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), African Americans start smoking at a younger age compared to Whites. Besides, many African American non-smokers consume the substance through secondary use (CDC (2020). Smoking is closely associated with such chronic illnesses like diabetes and cancer and increases mortality among members of this ethnicity. The tobacco industry contributes to the vice by developing promotional messages targeted towards African Americans.

Cigarette manufacturing companies often associate their products with cultural events in Black neighborhoods. Early abusers of the product thus associate it with positive images communicated to portray educational advancement and other societal benefits. The Black community also comprises the racial minorities in the United States with inadequate access to healthcare facilities. African American women experience higher rates of infant mortality compared to Whites due to poor maternity care.

The black population also suffers high levels of mortality due to chronic illnesses including obesity and heart disease. According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (2017). African Americans are twice likely to die of stroke compared to Whites. The prevalence of smoking, lack of adequate access to healthcare and susceptibility to chronic-illness related mortality makes the African American community a unique study group for this study.

Cigarette Smoking and Public Health

Cigarette smoking adversely affects an individual’s psychological and physical health. The health effects diminish economic performance and increase the cost of healthcare. Depression is a common pre-dispose individual to smoking among university students. However, smokers often manifest signs of depression. According to Jegede et al. (2018) the prevalence of tobacco smoking among mentally ill patients remains high despite a general decline of the practice.

The addiction affects medication for patients undergoing pharmacological intervention. Individuals undergoing psychotropic treatment may resort to smoking as self-medication initiative to increase dopamine in the brain. Researchers have also sought to establish the social and biological predispositions that expose individuals to tobacco consumption. Genetic factors predispose individuals to schizophrenia and could trigger substance abuse because of their common opioid receptor etiologies (Jegede et al., 2018). On the social front, membership to groups with tolerance to smoking creates a gateway towards tobacco consumption.

Social, Economic, Political, and Psychological Stressors Affecting this Population

The counseling goal aims at identifying the underlying causes of the nicotine addiction problem based on Morroson-Valfe’s (2017) revelation that most chemically dependent teens have a history of child abuse. In particular, the black American community is selected as its vulnerable to various social, economic, political, and even psychological stressors. The next section provided details about these emerging issues that can contribute to the development of the nicotine addiction problem.

Racial discrimination presents social, political, and psychological challenges for the young black American community. Socially, young black Americans may face isolation from their white peers, which may affect their mental health. Blacks also face various economic challenges including poverty and joblessness. Racism has perpetuated over the years affecting policy development and implementation. Such regulations may be favorable or unfavorable for this group, which creates political uncertainties, which in turn affects their mental health. Overall, the political, social, and economic challenges that black Americans encounter predispose their teenagers to chemical abuse including nicotine addiction.

  • Hypothetical Community: Young black American men addicted to nicotine;
  • Focus: Prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation.

The group considered for this assignment is a closed group because it is based on ethnicity. Open groups are those that individuals can join at any time while closed groups comprise of individuals who join at the same time. The black ethnicity is a homogenous group because it is joined by a history of discrimination and faces unique health vulnerabilities. African Americans suffer racism in access to employment opportunities and other routine acts of prejudice in daily life. The collective effects of these challenges result in impaired cognition and depression. The African American youth group identified for this study is a closed entity linked together by ethnicity and a history of societal discrimination.

Transitions and Situations Likely to Make the Population Develop Problems

The main factor contributing to nicotine addiction among black youth in America is economic status and racial discrimination. As an immigrant group, most black residents in America strive to sustain their livelihoods in the fast-paced economic state. The reason is that some of these immigrants move to the U.S. to escape political instabilities in their native countries; hence, have to start a new life in the U.S. Others move to advance their academic achievements, which may take a while before they get employed. As a result, most of these black communities take menial jobs with low pay to sustain themselves and their families.

As a consequence, the communities live in low income and deplorable conditions, which contribute to poverty. Children raised in such homes are vulnerable to substance abuse as they parents may not have enough time to monitor and discipline them because of spending too much time at work. Racial discrimination may also create mental health issues, which may predispose these youth to chemical abuse to cope with the associated depressive feelings. Racial segregation and poverty make black youths vulnerable to substance abuse.

Preventable Problems

Although racial discrimination may be challenging to address, as a counselor, I can help the intervention community respond to such acumen healthily. For instance, acceptance and self-identity is the first approach to addressing negative effects of racial discrimination. I will encourage the intervention group to recognize and appreciate their racial status in the country. Secondly, recognizing the presence of racial discrimination will prepare them for discriminatory comments or actions against them. Equally, understanding that response to such statements or actions is beyond their control can avoid associated chaos, and instead, prepare them to mentally accommodate them. In the case of extreme abuse, I can help them to understand the correct procedures to report and follow up on acts associated with racial discrimination.

Concerning absentee parents, I can engage the social circle of these young people, including parents and encourage them to spare some time to listen to and discipline the children to avoid delinquent behaviors. Moreover, I will emphasize that parents must be actively engaged in their children’s development as a vital approach to preventing the development of nicotine addiction. The interventions will prevent young black Americans from experimenting and actively seeking nicotine substances such as tobacco smoking.

Transitions that Cannot Be Prevented

Cessation of relapsing is a transition that cannot be prevented as long-term medical, psychological, and behavioral interventions are needed. However, commitment, chemical substance substitution, and mental stoppers can help the addicts cope with the transition. Smoking is both a mental and behavioral problem that be unlearned. Thus, behavioral approaches can significantly boost unlearning, including being mindful and classical conditioning. Being mindful will involve actively learning about the behavior pattern. In particular, understanding the emotions or activities that precede smoking can help in controlling the behavior.

The teenagers can also prevent relapsing to nicotine abuse using classical conditioning. Nicotine addiction occurs when nicotine is recurrently paired with a neutral stimulus such as surfing the internet. In other terms, behavioral repeatedly associated with smoking becomes conditioned to other actions such as negative feelings. Conversely, the smoking enjoyment may also be linked to accompanying behaviors such as smoking after an argument or after being discriminated. The disruption of such activities also lowers the appeal of smoking. Lastly, relaxation can also prevent smoking if it was caused by anxiety or stress.

Reducing the number of cigarettes smoked can also slowly terminate the behavior. This process should be conducted slowly and gradually to avoid withdrawal symptoms and instead, slowly train the mind to adopt a lesser dose of the drug each day. The approach will facilitate sticking to a limit and offer a visual representation of unlearning of the behavior. Although the process becomes more challenging as one progresses, commitment is essential.

Refection on Course Material

Chapter six highlights complementary and alternative treatment approaches to mental health, which creates a basis for this assessment. In particular, the holistic care plan would be the most ideal as it addresses all the four human dimensions; physical, emotional, sociocultural, spiritual, and intellectual offering a more intensive and effective intervention approach. Therefore, I would employ these four humanistic dimensions as treatment interventions. Physically, I would advocate for a substitution of the chemical element with more healthy options such as nicotine free smoking or substituting the behavior with exercise.

Emotionally, I would encourage the members to have positive social support systems that encourage them to stop smoking. Avoiding friends that smoke can also eliminate a major motivating factor to nicotine chemical substance abuse. Healthy social-cultural practices will include avoidance of cultural practices that may encourage substance abuse such as cultural celebrations where drugs are consumed. Lastly, spiritual intervention may entail educating the clients on the negative effects of substance abuse as addressed in the Bible or Quran and advocating for positive behaviors.

Client advocacy services to expand the helping network include creation of support groups and regular relevant educational plans. A social network program will also be created constituting the social networks; parents, siblings, and family members of the group members. Other self-help groups would include specific teams based on advancement nicotine addiction level, such as experimenters, active seekers, occupants, and burnout groups. Further classifications such as age and place of residence groupings would further enhance intervention approaches. For example, interventions to experimenters may be targeted as stopping progression, while that of the burnout level may focus on unlearning of the behavior.

Political action strategies will mainly feature influencing policies associated with the identified factors causing nicotine smoking among the youth. For example, poverty among black Americans was identified as a contributing factor, enhanced by the joblessness or performance of menial jobs. Policy propositions may include ameliorating the living conditions of black people in America and mandating that parents spend time and discipline their children. Concerning racial discrimination, I would advocate for policies that define stringent measures toward discrimination. An associated coalition-building is the legislature, which is linked to policy making and implementation. The sector would enhance policy formation, enactment, and implementation to prevent smoking among youngsters.

Acquired Skills

The acquired skills include program planning skills and strategies of approaching vulnerable populations. Program planning skills are evident from my ability to select and contextualize the group in a social, economic, and political context and later define their problem. In particular, in this task, black American youth addicted to nicotine abuse were selected for the assessment. Later, the team is subdivided into categories based on their various backgrounds for better treatment intervention.

In the reflection section, I have demonstrated ability to approach vulnerable populations through a holistic approach. The strategy covers a whole human dimension encompassing the physical, social, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual dimensions as alternative treatment strategies. The method is effective as it is affordable and applicable to almost any population, which makes it suitable in the current context. Moreover, a holistic treatment plan is patient centered which enhances its effectiveness.

The skills that I need to develop are multidisciplinary integration to link various healthcare professionals to offer a more comprehensive treatment plan. For example, some group members may need further psychiatric or medical interventions. Hence, an understanding of this skill will allow me to integrate various professionals in an intervention program to offer a more holistic and effective treatment plan for a selected community group.


Conclusively, nicotine addiction is among the leading forms of drug abuse in the US. The practise is most prevalent among African American men, which exposes youngsters to the practice. Black Americans are vulnerable to a variety of social, economic, and political challenges because of their migration status in the U.S. These aspects expose their children to delinquent behaviors such as smoking. This intervention program identifies black American youth as the participants. The intervention further subdivides this group into more identifiable categories to enhance intervention. The process equips me with program planning skills and strategies of approaching vulnerable populations, but I also need multidisciplinary team integration to enhance my intervention. An action plan highlights a plan to develop new skills and self-care processes. I will take care of myself through seeking supervision of more experienced members in the healthcare and mental health industry.

  1. Evaluate the main causes and effects of the group members’ conditions to understand the involved disciplines
  2. Contact various professionals, including doctors, psychiatrists, and counselors to help in the intervention
  3. Maintain the identified multidisciplinary teams for continued support
  4. Implementation of the intervention approach

Selection of Group Members

The intervention will be carried out through group activity and I will form these through purposive sampling techniques. The design of the groups will follow the focus group discussion model where individuals will hold discussions on specific topics for ten weeks. Before formation of the groups, I will outline the aims of the discussions based on research objectives. Members will be selected through non-probability sampling techniques based on demographics and willingness to participate. According to Nyumba et al. (2018) participant identification is one of the most critical steps in focus group formations and I must consider group dynamics and the synergy required by members to fully participate. Once the members have agreed to join the group, they will be taken through an orientation process and provided with the rules of participation. I ensure that they sign to forms of confidentiality before enlistment to the group. Members will commit to attending to a minimum of eight out of the ten sessions for this study.

Sample Group Sessions

Session one

Topic: Breaking the ice.


  1. To enable free interaction of the members
  2. To introduce the purpose of the group and lay down rules of engagement.
  3. To appoint group leaders


This will be the introductory meeting where the facilitator will enable bonding among the team members. He will introduce simple games for fun and enable members to freely interact in preparation for the discussions ahead. The team leader will lay down the rules of engagement and obtain a written and verbal commitment from the members.

Cultural implications

The facilitator will attempt to hold sessions in line with the cultural expectations of the community. The methodology pursues a collaborative approach towards solving the presenting problem, nicotine addiction and in this connection, he will consider such cultural aspects including gender relationships and sitting arrangements among others.

Ethical Implications

The engagement with the community will be based in voluntary participation and the facilitator will not compel members into actions they deem inappropriate

Session evaluation

At the end of the session, I will gauge the level of success by the free interaction between the members.

Material needed

  • A spacious room.
  • Chairs and a table.
  • Stationery.

Session Two: Identification of the Forms of Smoking


  • To establish the awareness levels nicotine addiction prevalent in the community.
  • To initiate free interaction about various forms of tobacco consumption.


  • The team leader will introduce the discussion topic.
  • Members will give their views about the topic under the guidance of the facilitator.
  • The secretary will record the main points.

Cultural Implications

  • Session will establish the attitude of the community towards smoking.
  • Session will also find out whether aspects of community culture promote cigarette smoking.
  • Establish whether there exists social stigma towards people who smoke cigarettes.
  • Find out whether there are forms of smoking that are more acceptable culturally than others.

Ethical implications

Facilitator will encourage members to desist from mentioning the names of people in their discussion.


Facilitator will carry out a recap session to ascertain the conceptualization levels of the group on the topic.

Materials Required

  • Stationery.
  • Whiteboard and markers.


CDC (2020). African Americans and Tobacco Use. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web.

Jegede, O., Ojo, O., Ahmed, S., Kodjo, K., Virk, I., Rimawi, D.,… & Olupona, T. (2018). Tobacco and Substance Use among Psychiatric Inpatients in a Community Hospital: Cessation Counseling, Correlates, and Patterns of Use. Journal of addiction.

Morrison-Valfre, M. (2017). Foundations of Mental Health Care-E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. (2017). Communities in action: Pathways to health equity.

Suicidality. Suicide Prevention Strategies

Cases of suicide are increasing daily in many countries due to various issues, such as drug abuse and poor mental health. Efforts need to be put in place to curb this emerging issue. Despite this, suicide prevention strategies aimed at reducing the occurrences of suicide remain under-researched. What is available is nothing but mere recommendations and opinions of what is thought to help offer safe caring for suicidal clients.

Generally, educating the health care providers on matters concerning suicide and modifications on the surrounding for the suicidal clients will help create a safe environment for them. Ensuring that the environment is safe is vital since the clients will experience a physical barrier and be forced to postpone the act. Due to this postponing, health care professionals will have enough time to monitor these people, look for the best way to help them, and probably convince them otherwise. A safe environment may also involve setting up more mental health facilities, where people can consult therapists after experiencing psychological challenges. Additionally, the health caregivers should be fully equipped with skills and knowledge of dealing with suicidal clients so that their approaches can lead to the best results.

Upon admission, the nurse should evaluate the client and assess the possible risks of committing suicide and ascertain the risk level. Establishing the level of risk will help the professionals on how to deal with the client specifically. A complete safety plan must also be availed during admission to ensure everyone’s safety at a specific unit. Clients who are equal in the levels of risk should always be monitored from the same place, and they should never be mixed with those from lower or higher levels of risk since this would be more dangerous. Upon discharge, it is essential to develop a collaborative safety plan conducive to the environment that the client will return to (Navin et al., 2019). For instance, a nurse can contact the family members and any other support individuals who will interact with the client after discharge.

Correspondingly, one can provide necessary information to the telephone crisis lines and contact the family members requesting them to assist. For all the clients, regardless of the level of risk, monitoring after discharging is a must. Caring should not stop immediately after discharging, but the health caregiver should continue contacting the patient either by texting, via e-mail, or even face to face. The first contact should be made within the first 24 hours after discharging and the second one within the first week.

Patients should be restricted from accessing valuables that can lead to the actual killing. These valuables include weapons, such as guns or knives, drugs of any kind, or even ropes. Most suicidal cases are due to hanging, shooting, or taking unprescribed drugs (Navin et al., 2019). Therefore, anything related to these cases must be unavailable for these patients. On the other hand, they should be allowed to access books and magazines with information regarding improving mental health. Music is also used in such therapies as the psychodynamic approach. Additionally, clients should be allowed to have radios through which they can listen to their favorite music that may prevent them from having suicidal thoughts. Gaming gadgets can also be allowed since they can help keep the patients busy, thus avoiding negative thoughts.

Health caregivers should be ready for anything from such clients since most of them can be violent. Creating a good rapport with them is the best counter when dealing with suicidal clients. Certified nursing assistants are responsible for gathering medical supplies, taking patient calls, checking for vital signs, bathing and grooming the patients, and feeding them while recording the progress. The licensed practical nurse (LPN) works under the supervision of doctors. LPN will document vital signs, collect samples, ensure the patient’s comfort, administer medication, and report the status of clients. Registered nurses are on the frontline of medicine and should have adequate skills to offer quality services to all patients. They are responsible for delivering patient care of high quality in various settings, such as hospitals.


Navin, K., Kuppili, P. P., Menon, V., & Kattimani, S. (2019). Suicide prevention strategies for General Hospital and psychiatric inpatients: A narrative review. Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine, 41(5), 403-412.

Beccaria Philosophies Analysis

Cesare Beccaria was named the first socialist who significantly questioned the state’s right to execute and imprison the citizens. This desire emerged after witnessing many citizens’ cruel and brutal deaths and a man accused of committing sodomy. The male was called Lisette and was viciously dealt with by the state. He got killed and burnt in front of the crowd, and the state ruled this act to be in line with the rule of law. This sent the message that instills fear in people so that they kept off from committing sins. Around this time, Beccaria was in his early twenties and had done law and thus knew the decree. Additionally, he was a son of a prominent aristocrat from Milanese. The knowledge of law made Beccaria productive in his mission in the world of enlightenment philosophy. He had different philosophies that led to many judicial system reformations and how punishments were instilled among the wrongdoers. These philosophies by Beccaria were recognized worldwide and mostly throughout Europe. Individuals can analyze Beccaria’s proposals and discuss how they are inspired by reason and what advantages society would gain by adopting them.

One of the Beccaria philosophies was his mission which stated that the greatest happiness was the pleasure shared amongst the greatest number of people. This mission was and is still beneficial since it favors most people’s joy: the citizens other than the few persons in power. Around this time, policies and decisions were made by the few elites that shared power. This was one of Beccaria’s setbacks in accomplishing his mission (Beccaria, 2009). These people never supported his ideologies and even wanted Beccaria not to proceed in accomplishing his mission. However, the fact that Beccaria was a son of a renowned aristocrat in Milanese and he had knowledge in matters concerning the law, he was able to bring the renovation. When happiness is about the big group, this is favorable to everyone, even the few people in power. The individuals in control are mostly concerned about their gains and formulate principles that favor them and continue harassing the many citizens. Thus, the approach involving happiness was a major aspect encouraged by Beccaria.

The other philosophy was to apply political economy principles to rationalize and humanize how the state used coercion on matters concerning punishments and crimes. This time, cruel and arbitrary use was the most used instrument practiced by the state to terrorize people and make them submissive for them. The government did this to avoid any attempts of rebellion from the people. Application of principles of the political economy toward these cruel harassments would significantly help society since different people could air their voices without fear of execution and persecution by the state.

When individuals are terrorized and have no power, the whole nation is colonized by a small group of elites who have total control of the rule of law. This serves as a setback for any nation that needs to grow since even people who could bring great revolution to the economy cannot do so due to fear imposed on them by the state (Beccaria, 2009). Moreover, great talents, great wisdom, and great skills in society cannot come out and impose their impact on society. For any nation to experience growth, there must be this freedom that everyone exercises some activities as long as they are under the rule of law and do not violate the protocols. These helped him since the state could not do anything to him regardless of the revolution he was bringing.

Beccaria used philosophy to revolutionize the way different societies in Europe thought about rules and regulations. He was never interested in what the policy stated, but his approach was censorial and concerned about the decree’s contribution to society. He argued that rule of law as a social institution instrument had always been taken for granted and should be a charitable social order tool. This philosophy brought substantial political, social and institutional reform. The few people in power were fond of using the law to make policies and create institutions that saw them as different favors. Instead of using the rule of law as a benevolent instrument for the social order, they used it to benefit themselves. That is why they were not supportive of anyone who tends to encourage reforms.

The rule of law should be more beneficial to the people and not only to the rulers. The statute’s primary goal is to maintain order in society and ensure that people enjoy their rights and freedoms without fear of contradictions. In this case, the rulers took advantage of their powers to threaten people and impose fear on them, and Beccaria was against this. Any society should adopt such philosophies from such a great philosopher, which will benefit the society. For instance, issues policies will not favor those in power since they will involve improving the communities. All people will also be valued regardless of their positions in society. Thus, the approaches can largely help people to live together and avoid engaging in various unethical behaviors.


Beccaria, C. (2009). On crimes and punishments and other writings. University of Toronto Press.