Lincoln’s CenterPointe sees anxiety calls triple during the pandemic

During these times stress and the need for counselors have gone up.

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – Since the beginning of the pandemic, anxiety has skyrocketed. With new everyday stresses, people need the support of mental health professionals more than ever.

UNL student Angela Gonzalez says she’s definitely been feeling the mental and emotional impact of coronavirus. Gonzalez commented that it’s been a difficult time, especially with so many unknowns; and her story is not unique.

Lincoln’s CenterPointe is a nonprofit, focused on providing mental health and addiction treatment for low income and homeless people. The CEO, Topher Hansen, says that as the pandemic continues, calls and walk-ins to the center have tripled.

“So the anxiety issues that are raised is up 279 percent, depression issues are up about 260 percent,” said Hansen. “The number of calls has increased substantially, dramatically.”

If you need some guidance, Centerpointe lists five simple ways to support your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  1. Limit your information intake. We all want to stay up to date on current events, but with so much information available it’s easy to be overwhelmed. Limit the times of the day and the total amount of time you spend reading the news or social media. Make sure to follow trusted and credible sources.
  2. Stay connected with others. Our relationships are critical to our mental health. In times of emotional uncertainty, many people tend to isolate themselves but this can often make things worse. Now that isolation is often required for managing this virus, it’s more important than ever to reach out to your social support system. Make sure you are in regular contact, whether it’s virtual or in-person.
  3. Maintain your routines. Our emotional well-being is directly tied to the predictability of our daily rhythms. A regular schedule brings a sense of calm and order. Any type of change can add stress. While the world adjusts to the challenges and restrictions of COVID-19, try to keep your routines as you are able. If your everyday tasks require some changes, incorporate some new routines. For example, you could do meditation, or make a phone call to a loved one.
  4. Take care of your body. Your ability to manage stress is directly tied to how well your body is functioning. Focus on eating, drinking water, sleeping, exercising, and keeping on top of any medical conditions. Practice stress management tools.  You can’t always control what happens to you. However, you can often control how you react to it. Prioritize managing your stress. You are no help to yourself or anyone else if you allow stress to take over. If you need some new ideas on how to manage stress, check out myStrength’s Reducing Stress and Controlling Anxiety programs. Also, Mindfulness and Meditation are great tools to help you cope with COVID-19.
  5. Get professional support. If you are really struggling or noticing significant changes in your mood or behavior, reach out to a mental health professional.

 

For more tips on how to manage your anxiety during the pandemic, click visit centerpointe.org. If you’d like to access myStrength, a free digital behavioral health app, click here.

Categories: Coronavirus, Health, Nebraska News