We're in this together!
What we all go through
All children and teens have different responses to stress. Common changes include: crying, excessive worry or sadness, unhealthy eating and sleeping habits, irritability, poor school performance, difficulty focusing, avoiding activities that were previously enjoyed, and use of substances. It is important to address these matters and support children and teens. Knowing the facts and stopping rumors surrounding COVID-19 can give a sense of control. Reaching out to friends through digital means can be beneficial to youth that cannot interact as they normally do. Also making attempts to do activities that give one joy and sticking to a schedule can help greatly. Finally, talking to someone close to you about your thoughts and feelings can alleviate stress and help you through these times.
Suicide Prevention During COVID
The COVID-19 pandemic has made people stay at home more than usual. This enables suicidal thoughts to be able to manifest much easier within a person’s mind because it is much more difficult to find an outlet to escape such thoughts. Feelings of isolation, anxiety, depression, and financial stress can amplify the risk of suicide. It is vital to protect people against suicidal thoughts and behaviors during these times. Maintaining support from the community and family, and maintaining a feeling of connection can help ease a person’s mind and help stray away suicidal thoughts. Furthermore, virtual counseling and therapy can help with such a situation.
Alcohol and Substance Abuse During COVID
The increased stress that results from COVID-19 leads to an increase in alcohol and substance. It is important to moderate usage of these substances, and for the youth to completely stay away from these substances as a whole.
If substance becomes a problem it can be helpful to locate virtual treatment, call the National Drug and Alcohol Treatment Referral Routing Service (1-800-662-HELP) to speak with someone about an alcohol or substance use problem.
Domestic Abuse During COVID
There is data from many regions that suggests an increase in domestic violence cases. This is not only a problem in the United States, it extends all throughout the world. It is a problem in Africa, Mexico, Brazil, China, the United Nations, and more. Specifically, in the United States there has been a dramatic increase in reports of domestic violence and abuse cases. Estimates from the United Nations estimates that three months of quarantine will result in a 20 percent increase in intimate partner violence around the world. With workplaces closed and much social interaction being limited, it gives IPV perpetrators more time and opportunities to take advantage of their significant others. Social isolation can lead to the normalization of abuse and allow abusers to become accustomed to gaslighting techniques. This repetitive cycle can become difficult to escape. Stress is also a known factor to increase domestic violence, and the stress that is brought upon households during the pandemic is not helping matters.