In these uncertain times, it is more important than ever to do our best to take care of our mental health.
Anxiety is a feeling of unease that may lead to panic attacks and may even manifest in physical symptoms such as heart palpitations and chest pain.
Good coping strategies are more important than ever. Listed below are a few ways to help maintain good mental health hygiene.
-Get up and get moving:
Exercising and moving your body is a proven method for managing anxiety. There are many new streaming platforms for at home workouts available some of which are free. Also stretching and yoga is a great option, and even has been proven for people managing anxiety and headaches.
Meditation has several proven benefits including helping to quiet the mind. There has also been studies showing that it’s beneficial for people with headaches. If this seems intimidating, just start with five minutes in the morning and try using a guided meditation app.There are many apps available for Free or low-cost including headspace.
-Stay in touch:
While it is extremely important to follow the social distancing guidelines to prevent further spread of COVID-19, it is important not to become socially isolated. Communicate with your friends and family via phone or video chat. You can even get creative and plan virtual dinners or even try a virtual book club.
As anxiety has increased, it becomes Difficult not to succumb to comfort-eating. Do your best to prepare healthy meals with lots of vegetables and fruit. Frozen vegetables and fruit are a great option to supplement your meals. A balanced diet will keep you feeling good and, as we know a healthy body is a healthy mind.
-Ask for help:
If you feel like you’re not able to manage your anxiety or depression on your own, ask for help. Many mental health counselors are available via telehealth visits. Also, free resources for counseling available is for New York City metropolitan area residents via a 24/7 hotline at 1-888-NYC-WELL (1-888- 692-9355) and via the website https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us/en/get-help-now/ you can chat with a trained mental health counselor.
Also, keep in mind that MCHN is available 9am -5 pm Monday through Friday for Telehealth visits to help you manage your headaches and symptoms.
Brooke Steiger, NP