”Self Help Strategies To Help You Deal With A Mental Heath Breakdown” is a collaborative post and includes affiliate links. Please see the disclosure page for more information. Disclaimer – always verify medical information with your doctor or a professional and follow all laws for your location.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had many more effects than the ones caused by the virus itself. It has caused an untold amount of suffering when it comes to people’s finances, business and mental health. In 2017, an estimated 11.2 million adults in the U.S., or about 4.5% of adults, had a severe psychological condition, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The pandemic is likely to have increased that figure.
Only a small percentage of people develop chronic conditions after something resembling a disaster. However, in a population of almost 330 million, a small percentage becomes a big number in absolute terms. Mental health is woefully neglected when it comes to treatment options, with fewer than half of the millions of adults with a mental illness receiving adequate treatment. This means that those large numbers can become a serious problem.
Get professional help
In this article, we are going to look at some of the self-care coping strategies you can implement if you, or someone close to you, is experiencing a mental health breakdown. It certainly doesn’t replace professional help such as those offered by the Front Range Treatment Center, but it could keep you on a stable footing while waiting for scheduling an appointment. If you are suffering a mental health breakdown, please seek medical attention. Please right now call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or chat here>>> https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/ Or visit the suicide prevention lifeline at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
Be consistent with your medication
It is very important to take your doctor prescribed medication on a schedule. And it is best to continue taking your medicines as prescribed by your specialist, even if you feel well. Mostly if your breakdowns co-occur, you should not discontinue your medication. Mental breakdowns can be minor while others can be extreme where one breaks down regularly. Even if they don’t happen in most cases, if they happen once in a blue moon, they can be fatal.
Look out for symptoms that can be a bit over the roof, such as severe anxiety, hallucinations, paranoia, high depression levels, and suicide thoughts. And notify your doctor immediately! If you suffer from any of this, consider revisiting your treatment center and doctor to discuss extra or different medication options. Your family doctor can suggest other ways to deal with the breakdowns other than medication such as relaxation techniques and effective ways to prevent another breakdown.
Stop watching the news or going on social media
The news and/or social media can help by encouraging awareness and prevention but reading and watching the outbreak obsessively can be harmful to mental health. If you feel like you are having a mental breakdown, seek medical help, turn off the TV, turn off the internet, and for old school people like me put down the newspaper. Try to limit the sources where you get your information from – stick to reliable and trustworthy organizations such as the CDC only when you have a specific question about a health issue you need information for. Don’t go down the rabbit hole of the internet that is full of fear mongering and “what ifs” situations. Better yet, schedule a consult or appointment to speak with your doctor or medical professional if you have questions or concerns regarding how your health could be impacted with the current issues. It is also important to always bear in mind that facts can be misreported or misinterpreted to suit agendas, and that official information is usually the best. You can choose a news medium that allows you to skip potentially triggering content. For example, when reading from an article on your cellphone or computer, you can scroll past disturbing photos and quickly reach the information that you need. More preferably, if you are feeling like you are at the edge of a mental health breakdown, just stop listening to the news and disable your social media accounts… yesterday! You have to protect your mind from latching onto all the negativity that is spewed out into our world daily and one way to do that is to shut the front door so none of it can get into your mind.
via GIPHY (Ok, this is drastic! Don’t break anything. Just push the OFF button!)
Maintain self-care habits
It is vital to make your physical and mental health a priority during this very challenging time. The most basic of self-care activities are sleep, physical exercise and a healthy diet. Find ways to address forms of stress, such as journaling, going for a walk or calling a loved one. Do you have a hobby that you enjoy? Use the time you were obsessing over social media with and devote it now to your favorite hobbies and/or exercising. Keeping your mind focused on positive things should help. Maintaining a sense of normality and routine can also help to reduce stress.
Activities that distract you from the current events can be helpful. Here are a couple of ideas:
A deep clean: a big ‘spring clean’, regardless of the time of the year can help to give you a sense of purpose and accomplishment when completed. It is not mentally taxing generally but is enough to keep your mind occupied. It is also thought that a tidy, clean and uncluttered environment can be beneficial to one’s mental health. During the pandemic, I think that in the US a huge majority of people have participated in the big cleanout of 2020. When I started cleaning up and decluttering our home while stuck at home, I went to donate items to a local charity. There was so much stuff that had been donated that there was no room to put items in the inside of the massive building and they had to leave a tractor trailer load of items under the drivethru area.
An online course: Many universities and colleges are offering free or heavily discounted online courses at the moment to help people get through this time. Learning a new skill can be a good distraction, as well as potentially putting you on a whole new fulfilling career path. Now is a GREAT time to learn programming. Check out a website like Coursera where they oftentimes offer free classes! Who knows instead of having a mental breakdown, you might just have a career breakthrough during this stressful time.
The important thing to do is to keep fighting for the professional help and support that you need. The above strategies can help you in the meantime and alongside professional help. The most important thing is to get professional help. Please if you are feeling down or depressed for more days than not, please seek medical attention. If you are feeling like you cannot go on, please call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or chat here>>> https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/ Or visit the suicide prevention lifeline at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/