THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WALB) - The COVID-19 pandemic can be stressful.
One department is making sure you take care of yourself and your family’s mental health.
Jennifer Dunn with the Department of Behavioral Health and Mental Disabilities says during times of isolation, your mental health is especially something you should be aware of.
“Anytime individuals are isolated and withdrawn for their typical social group, you’re going to see an increase in individuals that need mental health services,” said Dunn.
The department covers 24 counties across Southwest Georgia and oversees community providers who give services to individuals.
“We’re wanting to make sure that anybody that is feeling isolated knows that they can have somebody that they can talk to. This is a very very stressful time,” said Dunn.
Stressful times like the COVID-19 crisis can bring up a lot of emotions for families.
“It’s confusing to kids, it’s confusing to adults. It brings up concerns about health and safety, over and above what we would typically be thinking about,” explained Dunn.
She knows first-hand how hard it can be as a working mom, and now an at-home teacher for her children.
“The school systems, I think, in this area have been available for parents to reach out and let them know what they’re dealing with. I encourage parents to reach out to the school system. To let people know when they need help with something,” said Dunn.
She said it’s normal to feel anxiety or stress during this uncertain time.
“It’s okay to feel that way. We’re all feeling a little bit of that and some people feel it a little bit more and that’s a real feeling,” explained Dunn.
She said it can be very hard to cope with isolation, which is why they have resources available.
“We have our three main providers. Georgia Pines, which is in the Thomasville area, Aspire which is in the Albany area. And we have Legacy, which is in the Valdosta area,” said Dunn.
All are open for business using telehealth, but also to see patients in person, if needed.
You can also reduce stress on your own by staying in touch with loved ones, exercising, and journaling.
If you need to reach the Georgia Crisis and Access line, they are available 24/7. Their number is 1 (800) 715-4225.