by Emma S.
Here are the beginnings of a resource list for both maintaining your mental health and managing any mental health concerns you’re having during this pandemic. Please feel free to add/update the facebook document if you have other resources.
First and foremost, if you’re feeling like hurting yourself or someone else, please consider calling 9-1-1. If you don’t feel safe doing that, please consider texting the numbers below for the crisis text line, calling the national suicide prevention hotline or disaster distress line, or using any of the coping skills you know have worked for you in the past.
Remember that our pastors are also available for emergencies at 510-510-859-8876 (the pastoral emergency line).
Disaster Distress Helpline (by Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration) 240-276-2130
Crisis Text Line Text HOME to 741741
(Text with a crisis counselor 24/7 for free, confidential support.)
National Suicide Prevention Hotline 800-273-8255
(Provides free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals.)
The Trevor Project Lifeline 866-488-7386
(Hotline for LGBTQ youth in crisis, who are feeling suicidal, or who need a safe place and judgment-free place to talk. They also have chat and text options.)
The National Alliance on Mental Illness has a page for COVID-19 Information:https://www.nami.org/getattachment/Press-Media/Press-Releases/2020/COVID-19-and-Mental-Illness-NAMI-Releases-Importan/COVID-19-Updated-Guide-1.pdf?lang=en-US
Columbia University’s Coping with the Stress of a Pandemic has a lot of good resources that are helpful for people who aren’t students there as well:http://www.cumc.columbia.edu/student-health/coping-stress-pandemic-mental-health-guide-cuimc-students?fbclid=IwAR3AjLX7Ms0OsJiX5LbL52FD1jkk6H9xjVefEZqFyhxa3ZAcw56b-ljesAA
If you are looking for mental health providers, here are some ideas:
- Talk to your insurance company to find out what benefits you have.
- Many insurance plans are approving video sessions for people who usually don’t have that benefit.
- Look at online services, such as http://www.talkspace.com or http://www.betterhelp if you have the means.
- Check out online support groups, like at Mental Health America: https://www.mhanational.org/find-support-groups
Other things to consider:
- Use your church! Check out the community Facebook page to find out about zoom meetings and hang outs. Watch services on Youtube, Facebook, or the church website. If you’re not getting weekly emails from another church person in your neighborhood, email Louise Halsey (email@example.com) to get added to the spreadsheet. Let us know how you are doing and what you are praying about.
- Some insurance companies are approving an early release of prescriptions in order to have them on hand in case the supply chain is disrupted. If you have insurance, call and ask. You can also get 90 day supplies from many insurance companies with a 90 day prescription from your provider. Goodrx.com is also a good place to purchase (for cash price, not using insurance) medications you have a prescription for as a back up.
- Try to keep a routine, or at least a rhythm to your days.
- If you have access, set up video chats or phone calls with loved ones on a regular basis. You can also ask to use the church Zoom account to host hangouts, learning hours, or other virtually social gatherings.
- Ask people to check in on you every day via text or email or phone call. Check in on your loved ones this way as well.
- Remember the coping skills that you have used before. Coloring books? Drawing? Cleaning? Meditation? Listening to music? Podcasts? Listening to audiobooks (which you can get if you have a library account and a computer/smart phone)? Gardening? Going for walks? Even if you feel awful, those things may help just a little.
- A few mediations: https://www.headspace.com/covid-19
- Do you have a Healthcare Power of Attorney or an Advance Directive? These are important documents that let medical professionals know who you would want to make medical decisions for you if you were unconscious or unable to make your own decisions. Most people don’t think these are necessary until you’re “old,” but you never know when the need might arise (hit by a car? get cancer? having an emergency C-Section so will be under anesthetic?, etc.). These documents also can indicate to your providers and loved ones what your wishes are in these situations. Here’s an example of a thorough one (more added soon). If you’d like to discuss this further, Emma Say, Anna Gus, Robin Kempster, Molly Phinney Baskette, and more church folks have experience with these. (Also note that these are different from Financial Powers of Attorney.)
- Consider taking yourself on virtual field trips. Many zoos, aquariums, national parks, & museums are offering free online tours. There are also animal cams – live video feeds – all over.
- Here are some ideas for live animal cams: https://www.adventure-journal.com/2020/03/if-youre-stuck-inside-might-as-well-enjoy-this-list-of-animal-cams/?fbclid=IwAR0vJD925pPPp2f1vp8SxFyRupE4t8TUG4qKqofk1amjdNcXbW-guEpusnM
- Here are some more options for virtual tours: https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2020/03/9576127/free-virtual-tours-online
- Limit the time you are getting news. Make sure the news you are reading is from a trusted source. Some sources to consider:
- California Dept of Public Health: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/ncov2019.aspx?fbclid=IwAR3xQe10kPcdYtObIffbXxnwAPCnpw8xCk80Z8v2fjMX8_XglDg3PtmwGVo
- California State Coronavirus Response: https://covid19.ca.gov/
- Centers for Disease Control & Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
- World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019?fbclid=IwAR0UQCZ1n0fRJeOoCF0onJKPVPIIFj59Z_3vxJXitPXuzK1ljMUwr0Cojxc
- Johns Hopkins University & Medicine: http://coronavirus.jhu.edu
- Coronavirus stressing you out? Here’s how to cope (Baltimore Sun) https://www.baltimoresun.com/opinion/op-ed/bs-ed-op-0317-coronavirus-stress-cope-20200316-u5vacvgy6zbqvdun2roa3dkdoe-story.html
- Taking care of mental health in the face of uncertainty https://afsp.org/taking-care-of-your-mental-health-in-the-face-of-uncertainty/
- Managing Stress & Anxiety: Coronavirus Disease https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html
- COVID-19 and Pandemic Anxiety https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/two-takes-depression/202003/covid-19-and-pandemic-anxiety
- How to Manage Anxiety and Depression During COVID-19 https://adaa.org/learn-from-us/from-the-experts/blog-posts/consumer/covid-19-lockdown-guide-how-manage-anxiety-and
- Four Ways to Cope with Anxiety and Fear https://psychcentral.com/blog/coronavirus-anxiety-4-ways-to-cope-with-fear/
- Keeping Your Distance to Be Safe https://www.apa.org/practice/programs/dmhi/research-information/social-distancing
- How to Not Freak Out During Isolation https://forge.medium.com/100-ways-to-not-freak-the-fuck-out-during-isolation-7dd980584d8b
- 16 Ways to Cope with Coronavirus Quarantine and Self Isolation https://blogs.psychcentral.com/neurodivergent/2020/03/anxiety-depression-and-fight-or-flight-response-16-ways-to-cope-with-coronavirus-quarantine-and-self-isolation/
- COVID-19 Total Wellbeing Online Resource Guide https://blogs.psychcentral.com/scapegoat-recovery/2020/03/covid-19-coronavirus-total-well-being-online-resource-guide/