Two years of pandemic stress and fatigue. Continued economic uncertainty. The Midwestern winter doldrums. Experiencing any one of these events alone can be enough to incite exhaustion, anxiety, depression or a number of other mental health challenges. But experiencing them all together, at the same time? Uff-da, as we say in Minnesota.
According to a recent study, many people have experienced poor mental health throughout the pandemic, with over 30% of adults in the U.S. reporting symptoms of anxiety and/or depressive disorder—up from 11% of adults prior to the pandemic. It’s time for a mental health check-in.
What Does Mental Illness Look Like?
A mental illness is a disorder that affects your mood, feelings, behavior, or thinking. There are many different mental illnesses and symptoms can vary widely from person to person. Here are some of the most common ones found by the National Institutes of Mental Health. These may be indicators that an individual could be experiencing a mental health disorder and should seek help:
- Struggling to function normally in daily life
- Unusual changes in behavior
- Detachment from reality or experiencing things that aren’t real
- Excessive sadness, worry, or anger
- Suicidal thinking
- Extreme mood changes
- Inability to concentrate
- Substance abuse
What To Do If You’re Experiencing Mental Illness
- First, know that it’s okay to not be okay. These are challenging times, and we’re all going through it together. Give yourself extra grace, and be kind to yourself.
- Talk to your primary care provider if you have one. A primary care physician is important to help individuals navigate the health care system by coordinating and managing the client’s care.
- Reach out. Connecting with friends and family can help you feel less isolated, and remind you that you aren’t alone in your feelings.
- Keep healthy habits. Staying active is an important part of maintaining your mental health. Even getting outside for 30 minutes a day can help ease feelings of isolation.
- Stay in the present moment. When life is uncertain, thinking of what’s to come next can be stressful. Focus on what’s going on right now, and the things you are able to control, like social distancing and taking care of yourself.
- Get connected to care. The most important thing to do if you’re experiencing an increase in negative symptoms is to talk to your mental health provider or get connected to care. If you aren’t sure where to start, call our team at 651-925-8490.
How Guild Can Help
Guild offers integrated and person-centered services to help individuals stabilize their mental illness, create a successful care plan, and build a support network. We understand that there are often barriers to receiving care, which is why our services are community-centered. Call us at 651-291-0067 to get help.