After nearly three years, public health experts are optimistic COVID-19 is becoming more predictable, yet anxiety and depression caused by years of uncertainty, turbulence and change remains. For many, the worries over economic instability and the job market have only deepened.
When living with mental health challenges, uncertain times can become overwhelming, creating a sense of helplessness and an urge to withdraw.
During periods of external stress, it’s important to continue mental health treatment plans and monitor for any new symptoms.
Talk to your doctor
Keep the lines of communication open with your mental health care provider. In the event you don’t feel comfortable in a health care setting, telehealth may be an option. Talk to your provider to see what services are available online. For most people with a smart phone and an internet connection, it is possible to have a virtual visit.
Keep up with your medications
Maintaining your medication regimen is an important aspect of your health. Although maintaining a regular routine can be impossible during particularly trying times, staying on schedule with your medications is key to keeping your mental health symptoms under control.
Join a support group
There are numerous free online support communities and emotional support hotlines to help you feel less alone. Visit the National Association of Mental Illness HelpLine Coronavirus Information and Resources Guide for a complete listing of virtual groups.
Regularly check in with yourself
Increased stress or anxiety is understandable during difficult times, but knowing when these symptoms are warning signs of a worsening mental health condition is critical. Check in with yourself often and monitor how you’re feeling. If you’re noticing persistent problems like trouble sleeping, feelings of hopelessness or more, don’t hesitate to reach out to your provider for mental health resources or extra support.
Help in an emergency
If you or a loved one is in imminent danger of harm, call 911. Other immediate options for help include calling the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or texting TalkWithUs to 66746. (TTY 1-800-846-8517). The National Suicide Hotline is also available at 1-800-273-TALK.
As a nationally recognized provider of behavioral health services, Oceans Healthcare treats patients experiencing symptoms of depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, behavioral changes related to medication management or substance abuse and other behavioral issues. Please contact us if we can help you or your loved one with their mental health challenges.