Mental health in America is in a crisis. The pandemic has led to record number of job losses leading to financial turmoil. Alongside this, political troubles, education problems and protests have the entire nation caught in a mental health catastrophe.
Within recent decades, the stigma of mental health has improved and people are now more open to speaking about their issues and willing to seek help. With this, businesses have adapted their providings to allow socially distant providings. RTT has recently conducted a study to see just how trends have been changing and how the public have been coping during COVID19.
Since the announcement of the pandemic, there have been increasing reports of poor mental health. Foundations are making every effort to help the public through these times with their mental health, but without knowing the signs, it can be hard to detect, even within yourself.
It isn’t just a feeling of sadness that is linked to mental health problems, increasing confusion and issues with concentrating are both signs. Excessive feelings of guilt, worry or fearfulness, alongside extreme mood changes are things to look out for.
Sleep disruption, withdrawal from others, tiredness and fatigue are all common signs as well. It’s important to remember that everyone is different and symptoms are not exclusive to this list.
We are experiencing increasing loneliness during this time. Whether this is a vulnerable person having to shield or simply someone who lives alone and is now working from home and missing the daily conversations with colleagues.
While video calling has risen in popularity and is a great modern solution to the problem of loneliness, it doesn’t quite replace that face-to-face interaction even the most introverted of people need now and then.
Loneliness is reported to be as bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and if not properly addressed, it can lead to both mental and physical harm long-term.
Those searching for online help reported a recurring theme, loneliness and self-isolation were prevalent for the reason they were searching for help.
Apps can cater to almost every need nowadays, including helping individuals with their mental health problems. Calm, Headspace and Better, three of the most popular wellbeing apps, saw a massive increase in Google searches this year.
Compared to 2019, there has been almost a 100% increase in searches in the USA and it is no coincidence that these apps peaked in popularity during key COVID related events in America.
These apps host various features, from meditation, mindful breathing and even aid with sleep troubles. Many users have stated that they have used these apps to feel centered and have a sense of routine, especially if they are unable to maintain their usual pattern.
However, it has been warned that these apps should not be seen as a replacement for seeing a professional. Those with slight mental health issues can certainly find some respite within these applications, but anyone who is seriously suffering needs to see someone who has undertaken the proper training for how to become a therapist.
These apps can help in the short-term, especially as face-to-face sessions may not be available within your state at this time.
When mental health is diminishing, especially at a rapid pace, individuals should look to the professionals as soon as possible.
While apps can provide some help, they are not tailored towards specific needs and experiences and if the public begins to rely on them entirely for their mental health problems, there will be serious repercussions in the future.
Becoming a therapist takes many years of training, which means those who are qualified really know how to handle psychological problems. The sooner these professionals can step in and help, the better and the results will be superior.
It’s a very strange time for all of us and not all services are operating as normal. In the mean-time, there are short-term solutions that can ease some of these problems until service returns to normal.
Read reviews of certain mental health apps and choose one accordingly to personal issues and solutions that are being sought. If nothing seems to make a difference, don’t feel discouraged, we all work in different ways.
Keep an eye on your diet, junk food may feel comforting at the time but long-term it can make us feel worse. Keep active, even if it’s just a walk around the block each day, fresh air and moving can make a world of difference to mental health.
Even the smallest change can make a difference during this time, if you are struggling, don’t be afraid to reach out and remember to reach out to those you love, it’s a hard time for all of us.