For the latest CMHA Middlesex Service updates, please visit: https://cmhamiddlesex.ca/covid-19-service-update/
CMHA recognizes that at this time of uncertainty, symptoms of anxiety and depression may be exacerbated. These five basic tips may help individuals experiencing heightened mental health concerns to remain calm and balanced as this public health situation unfolds.
- Considering the level of attention and seriousness being paid to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s normal to feel anxious. Try not to avoid, ignore or suppress anxious thoughts. Instead, be aware of your anxiety and accept that you’re feeling anxious in this situation. Try to keep things in perspective; notice and challenge your thoughts that may be extreme or unhelpful.
- Self-care is critically important at this time, as worries can be made worse if we aren’t taking care of ourselves. Lean on social supports, try to get enough sleep, eat healthy, exercise and engage in enjoyable activities. Do the things you would typically do to support your health, and be sure to use caution and follow health and safety guidelines while doing them.
- Seek information from reliable news sources only. Limit checking in on the latest news to short, defined periods, and refrain from setting related push notifications on your device. Appropriate information consumption may be calming and can lessen the sense of danger.
- Take the recommended precautions as outlined by Health Canada and other credible health agencies. Remain focused on the factors within your control, such as washing hands, covering your mouth during coughs and sneezes, avoiding non-essential travel, etc.
- If you’re noticing that your symptoms of anxiety (in association with COVID-19 or otherwise) are causing you significant distress or are interfering with your ability to function normally, reach out for formal mental health supports from a recognized agency, such as CMHA.
|BounceBack||BounceBack® is a free skill-building program managed by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA). It is designed to help adults and youth 15+ manage low mood, mild to moderate depression and anxiety, stress or worry.|
|Big White Wall||People come to Big White Wall for support with a wide range of mental health and wellbeing issues – from anxiety, depression, isolation and stress, to relationship problems and lifestyle challenges.|
|Wellness Together Canada||Wellness Together Canada provides free online resources, tools, apps and connections to trained volunteers and qualified mental health professionals when needed.|
|Caregiver Support during COVID-19||The COVID-19 Community South West Region Pandemic Planning Table recognizes the increased strain and challenges of caregiving during this time. An online one-stop shop with printable tip sheets has been created to support caregivers in Grey Bruce, Huron Perth, London Middlesex, Oxford and Elgin.|
Check in on your mental health – a resource from CMHA National. It is not a scientific tool, or a way to diagnose yourself. It’s just one way to check in with yourself about your mental health, and maybe guide you on how to support and improve it.
Resilience Support Toolkit for Health Care Workers
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact daily life for Canadians, mental well-being remains a strong focus. With the province slowly loosening restrictions and businesses starting to re-open, we’re seeing heightened anxiety around returning to work, fear of a second wave of the virus, and uncertainty about returning to normal social behaviours.
The Government of Ontario continues to support Ontario residents by offering a variety of free mental health resources that they can access online. This includes internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (iCBT) programs, such as AbilitiCBT, by Morneau Shepell, and Beacon Digital Therapy by MindBeacon.
Both iCBT programs, which offer guided support by professional therapists, can help people develop skills and strategies to address symptoms of mild to moderate anxiety and/or depression. The programs are also available in English and French.
To access these supports, go online to covid-19.ontario.ca. If you’re interested in learning more, please see program materials below:
Caring for children in the COVID-19 crisis (from CMHA – Mental Health Week)
Caring for Your Team During COVID-19 Pandemic (from Mental Health Commission of Canada)
Caring for Yourself During COVID-19 Pandemic (from Mental Health Commission of Canada)
How to Cope with Post-Traumatic Stress During COVID-19 (from Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute)
How to Cope with Grief and Loss during COVID-19 (from Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute)
How to Manage Anxiety During COVID-19 – A Guide for Frontline Workers (from Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute)
More than simply “fine” (from CMHA – Mental Health Week)
Social connection is the cure ( from CMHA – Mental Health Week)
Your Social Distancing Survival Guide (from CMHA – Mental Health Week)
COVID-19 Information Sources:
Mental Health Works Presents: Compassion Fatigue for health service providers supporting older adults
On Demand Webinar from Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute – each month a free webinar is provided
3 Tips for Supporting Anxious Children – from Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute
5 Ways to Overcome Mask Anxiety (SW Public Health Unit)
How am I Doing? (from Mental Health Commission of Canada)
How Can I Help my Team? (from Mental Health Commission of Canada)
Mental Health & Addictions Services in Huron and Perth
Mindful Breathing Tips (from Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute)
7 ways to #GetReal about how you feel (from CMHA – Mental Health Week)
Tolerance for Uncertainty: A COVID-19 Workbook – www.baypsychology.ca