Checking In: Warning Signs of Mental Health Issues
If you know someone who suffers from mental health issues, check in on them. Depression, anxiety, addiction, eating disorders, schizophrenia, Bipolar, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders can all be triggered by traumatic incidents like what we are going through. Maintaining mental health can be a full-time job for some people. Even the healthiest of people are struggling to control their emotions and maintain a new schedule for structure. The financial, social, emotional and professional supports altered in a short time have the potential to heighten all emotions.
We are all trying to ride the wave, but for some, the wave can feel like a tsunami.
Check-in with people you know that might be struggling with their emotions. Some warning signs that someone may not doing well include:
Increased and consistent talk of doom, danger, plague, and of the world, destruction
Staying up all night and/or sleeping all day
Excessive worry over germs, illness, money, political theories or religious ideas
Hyper focused on activities such as cleaning, exercising, counting, hand washing, pulling out hair, eyebrows and/or eyelashes
Stop taking medication
Increased use of alcohol, pot or other addictive substances
Hyper-vigilance to watching the news
Not interacting with people, blank stares, spending time alone (except for normal teenage behavior)
Expressing feelings of hopelessness or helplessness
Not interested in things that previously brought pleasure
Not eating or overeating
If you know anyone that is showing signs of these behaviors or has a mental illness, check in on them. Even if they become defensive, show them you care and ask if they need help. Their medical providers are still seeing patients even if it is through video conferencing. They might just need a little support to get their emotions back on track.
Our office continues to offer telehealth appointments. It is simple to use and secure. Please contact our therapists to request an appointment.
Karen Peabody, LICSW is a therapist and business consultant for social workers and therapists interested in starting their private practice. She founded Forgewell Solutions in East Bridgewater, MA. Her office is a great place to start a private practice. Visit her FOR THERAPISTS page to learn more.