I still remember the moment I got the call. It was the health department. You may have come in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. All the sudden I found myself in self-preservation mode. I must protect my clients, I must protect the vulnerable, I must protect my family. An array of emotions came over me including anxiety and concern.
I remember thinking I don't have time to isolate and quarantine. I recently had started a new private practice and I also was working as a program director of a treatment program. As weeks turned into months I found myself, just as others trying to deal with the reality. It became the new normal. Toilet Paper, Hand Sanitizer, Mask and Social Distancing. Panic buying, and social distancing.
There was also death, loss, grief and separation during these times. So with all this being said what has these things taught us about ourselves, about relationships and about mental health. Here are a few things that I have observed.
Isolation exasperates mental and emotional distress. One statistic showed during the pandemic that anxiety and depressive concerns jumped from 11% to 41%. There can be a natural response to try to resolve are distress on our own. Many times this perpetuates the distress and lengthens the pain.
Relationships and there bonds matter. There is value in community. When we choose to embrace others and not do life alone it feeds our soul. We saw this with neighbor helping neighbor and families slowing down and being together as they worked from home. Families found themselves doing life together literally. Kids were home. Parents were home and adjustments were made.
Increase in Substance Abuse, Pornography and Domestic Violence. Date suggest that Substance Abuse, Pornography and Domestic violence numbers increase in the wake of the COVID19 pandemic. These issues show the need for services and how services need to be accessible.
Accessibility to Mental Health Care is critical. The surge of tel-health services has allowed individuals to get the healthcare needed. Anytime we as a society can offer services to individuals experiences mental and emotional distress is a win for all of us.
If you are feeling disconnected, or are experiencing mental and emotional distress feel free to contact our office at 605-271-7712 or visit our website at www.restoredtonewlifeservices.com. Services are available in person or through tel-health no matter where you live in the state of South Dakota.