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Mental Health Resources, Coping Strategies During COVID-19

Post Date:03/23/2020 3:00 PM

The outbreak of COVID-19 is an unprecedented time for many residents. The need for social distancing has disrupted our daily lives in a new and significant way. Spending days or weeks at home with limited resources, stimulation and social contact can take a toll on your mental health.

Carver County continues to provide supportive mental health services to our community during the pandemic.

If you cannot control your emotions, cannot carry out your daily routine, or are having suicidal or other negative thoughts, you may get immediate help by contacting the crisis team at any time of the day or night, 7 days a week, by calling (952) 442-7601. The crisis team provides counseling or links you to other resources.

If you or someone you care about feels overwhelming nervousness, lingering sadness or other reactions that impact their job or relationships, please call First Street Center at (952) 442-4437. At First Street Center we offer outpatient mental health therapy and medication services, crisis services, housing support, as well as other programs to support those experiencing mental illness. In an effort to keep you safe during the pandemic, First Street Center offers individual, family and group therapy sessions and medication consults via video conferencing or telephone. We are using simple technology and will guide you every step of the way as you get started.

Here are some tips to help you cope with the anxiety and stress caused by the coronavirus 19 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Communicate with your children. Discuss the COVID-19 news coverage with honest and age-appropriate information. Focus children on routines and schedules to help minimize their stress. And remember, children observe your behaviors and emotions for cues on how to manage their own feelings during this time.  

Get outside. Heading outdoors kicks your cabin fever away without exposing yourself to coronavirus. While park programs have been cancelled and recreations facilities are closed, most parks and trails remain open for public enjoyment, including our own Carver County Parks system. Parks and trails offer lots of room to maintain physical distance from others while getting a little exercise.

Limit your news intake. Now that you’re spending your days at home, tuning into news reports all day becomes easier. While staying current on the situation is important, taking a break from the constant stream of news keeps anxiety in check. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s webpage dedicated to the COVID-19 outbreak contains useful, reputable, and accurate information: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov.

Stay connected. Connecting with family and friends fosters an important sense of normalcy; it also provides outlets for sharing feelings and relieving stress. Maintain these connections without increasing your risk of getting the virus by talking on the phone, texting or chatting with people on a social media platform. Mealtime is a great way to check-in with your own family throughout the day—remember to keep the conversation positive.

While we face uncertain times, you don’t have to go through it alone. Carver County posted a variety of resources to help you and your family cope with the fear, anxiety and other emotions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic at www.co.carver.mn.us/covid-19.