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The COVID-19 pandemic is stressful for virtually everyone across the globe. When you are concerned about your mental and physical health during the outbreak, in addition to working through the process of healing from substance abuse issues or alcohol dependency, you probably need additional support. Guidelines for health and safety encourage you to stay home as much as possible and maintain social distances when out in public, so finding online support during the pandemic may help alleviate some of your anxiety and help you cope in a healthy way.
Stress During the Pandemic
The CDC explains that being able to cope with stress in a healthy way will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. You are probably experiencing a great deal of stress during COVID-19. Fear and anxiety about a new disease and what could happen can be overwhelming and cause you to experience strong emotions. Public health actions, such as social distancing, can make you feel isolated and lonely and can increase your stress and anxiety. However, these actions are necessary to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Stress during an infectious disease outbreak can sometimes cause:
- Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones, your financial situation or job, or loss of support services you rely on.
- Changes in sleep or eating patterns.
- Difficulty sleeping or concentrating.
- Worsening of chronic health problems.
- Worsening of mental health conditions.
- Increased use of tobacco, alcohol, and other substances, which will only make your situation worse.
Online Support for Mental Health
The good news is that finding online support during the pandemic is possible, as a lot of support organizations have recognized the need to continue to offer such support in a safe, healthy way. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) has set up an anonymous peer-to-peer online anxiety and depression support group (now with more than 40,000 subscribers from around the world) in a friendly, safe and supportive place for individuals and families to share information and experiences.
In addition, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) provides credible, online information and resources to help you navigate through this crisis. In this guide, you will find answers to questions ranging from how to manage anxiety during this difficult time, to how to access medication while in quarantine, to how to deal with the loss of a loved one to COVID-19.
Online Support for Physical Health
Staying at home for months at a time can have negative effects on your physical health, which, in turn, can impact your emotional and mental health. Instead of sitting on the couch all day, watching tv or scrolling through social media, try finding online support during the pandemic for your physical well-being. There are a number of options for low-cost and even free virtual exercise sessions. You can practice mind-calming yoga and meditation or opt for calorie-burning cardio sessions.
Online Support for Addiction
When you are in addiction treatment, support is definitely beneficial to your continued recovery. Support groups such as those hosted by Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) have shifted online during the pandemic as well. Both groups, as well as other groups offering online support, recognize that social contact is a vital aspect of support and treatment when you are in recovery. These virtual meetings offer you an alternative to your isolation, which is a struggle you deal with in your substance abuse treatment as well as during the pandemic.
Alcoholics Anonymous support group meetings are listed on their website. In addition, the organization provides a number of online resources, so you can learn how to make the most of the resources available through online AA meeting. They provide videos, pamphlets, and guides on how to work the program, available in multiple languages.
Narcotics Anonymous also provides useful information for those wishing to attend virtual meetings online or by phone. Even if you do not have a reliable internet connection, you can participate in support group meetings, as most also offer a telephone option.
Finding Support at Hope by the Sea During the Pandemic
We understand the stress and anxiety you may be experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic. When you need help with your addiction to drugs or alcohol, we continue to offer a top clinical staff, a serene setting, and over fifteen years of experience treating addiction to guide you through a successful recovery from your addiction. Please contact Hope By The Sea immediately for assistance. Our team is following every CDC protocol for COVID-19 for your health and safety.