With the latest surge in COVID-19 cases and the stressors and isolation that can come along with that, the nation’s mental health crisis for young adults is growing, according to U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy.
As we enter a new year, many college students may be home for winter break. This is a good opportunity for parents and guardians to check in with their loved ones and for students to take time to check in with themselves. But these tips can be useful, no matter the time of year.
- Unplug The news right now can be hard to hear. If you find yourself doom scrolling, take a step back. It’s ok to unplug sometimes and putting the phone down for just an hour can improve your mood. Take the time to recenter yourself in the present moment.
- Check-in with yourself Are you feeling unmotivated or hopeless lately? Are you having trouble finding joy in things you used to love? Know that there’s nothing wrong with you and you’re not alone, but there is help available to feel better.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help If you’re struggling or having thoughts of suicide, talk to a trusted friend or family member, or call New Vista’s 24-Hour Helpline, 1.800.928.8000. We care about your wellbeing and we know there is so much good ahead in your life.
For Parents and Guardians
- Look for signs your loved one may be struggling This could be sudden changes in mood, sleeping or eating habits, problems at school or an increase in drinking or drug use.
- Start a conversation Don’t be afraid to bring up the topic of mental health. It shows you care. And once you’ve started the conversation, be a good listener. Allow your child to be open and honest, without judgment.
- Offer resources There is help available. Many colleges offer mental health support, but they may be overwhelmed with the massive need right now. New Vista’s 24-Hour Helpline, 1.800.928.8000, is available for support in a crisis. Our staff can also connect you with licensed therapists and psychiatrists via telehealth or in-person appointments.
New Vista is the non-profit community mental health center serving 17 counties in Central Kentucky. For support, questions or to make your first appointment, call our 24-Hour Helpline, 1.800.928.8000.