As we work together as a society to help stop the spread of coronavirus, it is important to ensure that, in doing your part, you are taking care of your own mental health.
Prolonged periods of isolation such as quarantine can lead people to ruminate on past traumas, and can exacerbate underlying mental health conditions, such as depression or bipolar disorder. Simply staying at home for prolonged periods can lead even moderate drinkers to up their alcohol consumption. These and other side effects of the strong medicine that is quarantine and social distancing mean that we all need to take extra care of ourselves. Therapy can be one important component of that self-care.
Substance Abuse & Addiction
Quarantine and social distancing can lead to increased substance abuse among casual substance users and addicts alike. The boredom of sitting at home and diminished social outlets may cause those with substance abuse disorders to lean on substances to occupy and distract themselves. With many services, such as group therapy or AA, becoming less available, compounded by stress, addicts may find themselves struggling with the pull of their addictions or even relapsing.
Moderate drinkers may find that the stress of the pandemic, combined with the isolation and boredom of quarantine, has led them to increase their drinking. The same pattern may manifest for substance abusers of all types, from illicit drugs to even food.
If you think that you or a loved one may have developed a pandemic-related substance abuse issue, help is available. Even if you aren’t sure, speaking with a licensed professional like Nancy Hilsenrath can help keep you from slipping further into problematic substance abuse, or maybe even from getting there in the first place.
The stresses of pandemic and quarantine are not unique to substance abusers. With plenty of socially distanced gambling options available, some people may find themselves struggling with newfound addiction to online gambling, and gambling addicts may find themselves relapsing into old habits. Nancy Hilsenrath can provide counseling for problem gambling.
Underlying mental health issues may also be exacerbated by our rapidly changing reality. We live in anxiety inducing times. Increased stress, whether from job loss, grief, or even fear of you or a loved one contracting COVID-19 can affect your mental health. Social isolation, grief, trauma, and drastic changes in routine can all serve as catalysts to trigger or exacerbate mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety. With the stress of the pandemic and collateral effects of quarantine, many people are finding that their mental health has been affected.
Whatever is taxing your mental health and however that is affecting you, whether it be depression, PTSD, or any other condition, Nancy Hilsenrath is available to provide therapy.
Help is Here
If you or a loved one are experiencing these or similar issues, you are not alone. Nancy Hilsenrath is available to provide counseling in a variety of formats to meet your individual needs. In person sessions are available (indoors or outdoors), in addition to video and telephonic sessions. Nancy Hilsenrath offers a variety of services, including mental health counseling, abuse counseling, EMDR, and critical incident stress debriefing.
Whatever challenges 2020 has thrown at you, Nancy can help.
Contact Nancy Hilsenrath, LCSW, CASAC, SAP for info. about counseling near you.
EMAIL NANCY or call (718) 551-2777
3 COUNSELING LOCATIONS: West Hempstead, NY, Douglaston, NY, Hewlett, NY