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Coping with Stress
At CCP, we offer access to licensed mental health counselors and clinical social workers as Behavioral Health Consultants (BHCs) in most of our practices. These Behavioral Health Consultants assist our patients with mental health issues, stress, coping, behavior and lifestyle change, and the behavioral management of chronic disease. With the changes and demands COVID-19 has brought our way, our Behavioral Health Consultants are working to adapt and implement the necessary services for our patients. Instead of seeing patients in our offices, our Behavioral Health Consultants are offering care using telephone visits and telemedicine video visits at this time. Our Behavioral Health Consultants are also offering assistance to patients who are experiencing stressors of any kind due to COVID-19. Whether you are having difficulty adjusting to working from home, social distancing, homeschooling, trouble sleeping, or more, our Behavioral Health Consultants are here for you at this time. To connect with one of our BHCs via telemedicine, it's as simple as calling our behavioral health schedulers at 518-836-3656 or 518-213-0584, requesting an appointment using our website, or calling your doctor to let him/her know you want to be seen. Within a short time, you will be connected to one of our licensed counselors.
Everyone—adults, teens, and even children, experiences stress. Moreover, everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. With the outbreak of COVID-19, some of you may be feeling stressed and bewildered. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. But, coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger.
With the information regarding COVID-19 changing rapidly, we understand it can all be confusing, overwhelming, and scary. Whether you are living with a high-risk family member, dealing with patients, trying to juggle work, or keeping your kids occupied, we know stress can pile up and negatively impact you, both physically and mentally.
Healthy Ways to Cope with Stress
Feeling emotional and nervous or having trouble sleeping and eating can all be normal reactions to stress. Here are some healthy ways you can deal with stress:
- Practice self-care. Eat healthy and well-balanced meals. Get regular physical activity and plenty of sleep. Don't forget to give yourself a break now and then if you begin feeling overly stressed!
- Share your problems and how you are feeling with a parent, friend, counselor, doctor, or pastor.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol. These may seem to help, but they can create additional problems and increase the stress you are already feeling.
- Take a break! If news events are causing your stress, take a break from listening or watching the news.
- Recognize when you need more help. If problems continue or you are thinking about suicide, talk to a psychologist, social worker, or professional counselor.
Children and teenagers often struggle with how to cope with stress. They react, in part, on what they see from the adults around them. When parents and caregivers deal with the COVID-19 pandemic calmly and confidently, they can provide the best support for their children. As a parent, there are many things you can do to support your child, such as:
- Take the time to talk with your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.
- Reassure your child or teen that they are safe. Let them know it is okay if they feel upset. Share with them your personal experiences with stress so that they can learn how to cope from you.
- Limit your family's exposure to news coverage of the event, including social media. Children may misinterpret what they hear and can be frightened about something they do not understand.
- Try to keep up with regular routines. Since schools are currently closed, create a schedule for learning exercises, relaxing, and fun activities.
- Be a role model. Take breaks, get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well. Connect with your friends and family members virtually.
Following these tips can go a long way in helping you manage stress, as well as add a sense of normalcy during this crazy time. If your anxiety begins to get in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row, it's time to contact your healthcare provider for additional help.
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