Since Youth Home began implementing procedures to address COVID-19, there has been an explosion in information about dealing with mental health issues related to the pandemic. COVID-19 has forced measures such as isolation, social distancing or physical distancing, work from home, and online school.
It’s important to take care of yourself, and show yourself compassion, in times of great stress and isolation.
From CNN, staff writer Madeline Holcombe and Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen discuss ways to manage mental health during the pandemic. It is important to recognize the trauma that is possible as a result of isolation from social interaction, anxiety and other mental responses to social and financial stress, and the grief of missing special moments of life.
Social Distance and Mental Health
Thanks to KATV Channel 7 for helping Youth Home share the importance of social connection even in a time of social distance, especially for people with mental health conditions.
In this story, Clinical Therapist Allyson Shoptaw talks about ways to deal with isolation. People concerned about mental health can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text TALK to 741741.
To learn more about “social distancing,” take a look at “Social Distance: The importance of the 6 feet rule” from THV11 featuring Dr. Joe Thompson from the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement (ACHI).
Anxiety Assistance: Focus on Wellness
Thanks to The Trauma Project on Facebook, for sharing Dr. Odelya Kraybill’s “Living with Uncertainty” from Psychology Today. Dr. Kraybill addresses the particular needs of trauma survivors when it comes to managing the stress of uncertainty.
CNN offers “Anxious about the pandemic? Here’s how you can get help without leaving home” by Sara Ashley O’Brien, focusing on the benefits (and downsides, especially with social media) of using technology to share life and be compassionate toward others during this time of social distance.
This link also includes an interesting, wide-ranging video interview with Dr. Laurie Santos, creator of Yale University’s famous Happiness class, “The Science of Well-Being” and her own podcast, “The Happiness Lab”.
From Inc.com comes a collection of presentations, “5 TED Talks That Will Help You Manage Anxiety and Build Resilience” featuring topics such as resilience, mindfulness, and “habits of happiness”. Visit ted.com for a free archive of inspiring videos and other content about some of the most interesting ideas in the world today.
Mental Health Organizations Offering Help
The Mighty, an online community for people with health conditions, has a Covid-19 feed with comments, questions, virtual events, and more. You do not have to be a member to scroll but you do have to sign up to post. Visit the Covid-19 feed here.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is worth following on Facebook and has published “Mental Health and COVID-19” which includes articles, social media content, and public health-related guidance.
Mental Health America has posted a wide-ranging collection of articles, links, and other content to help people understand and manage the mental health impacts of Covid-19. at https://mhanational.org/covid19
NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) is a great source of updates and guidance for people with mental health conditions or concerns. Check out the NAMI Arkansas Facebook page and the national website, nami.org.
For up to date information about Covid-19 and testing, visit Arkansas Department of Health. Public briefings by Gov. Asa Hutchinson and his response team are on Facebook, the governor's website, UALR Public Radio KUAR 89.1, and local news channels KATV-7, THV-11, KARK-4 News, and FOX 16 News.
Signs of stress and mental illness after traumatic events can be addressed by timely treatment. For national information about responding to events with mental health in mind, visit the website for the Subtance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) and learn about their assistance during major events.