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LINCOLN - COVID-19 can significantly affect mental health for everyone. Both the worry and anxiety of contracting the virus as well as the increase in loneliness and isolation can worsen and trigger symptoms.
During May, Mental Health Awareness Month, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services urges everyone to pay attention to feelings they may be experiencing. People with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment plans.
“Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations, and how you respond to the situation can depend on your background, the things that make you different from other people, and the community you live in," said Sheri Dawson, director of the Division of Behavioral Health at DHHS. “The impact of isolation can take a toll on your mental health. When you feel challenged, continue to focus on what you can control. Taking care of yourself, your friends, and your family can help you cope with stress. Helping others cope with their stress can also make your community stronger. Don't let perceived stigma prevent you from asking for help."
Stress during an infectious disease outbreak can include:
Try these strategies:
Overwhelmed and need to talk? You are not alone. Help is available. Nebraska has behavioral health providers that are ready to serve you. To find one near you, visit the Network of Care page at https://portal.networkofcare.org/Sites/Nebraska?state=nebraska
There are a number of hotlines also that stand ready to help.