AltaPointe Health program works to help people experiencing pandemic fatigue

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AltaPointe Health wants you to know it is okay to seek mental health help.

Are you struggling to cope with pandemic fatigue? Pandemic fatigue is sometimes referred to as the three-headed monster. It is a combination of anxiety, depression, and overall sadness. AltaPointe Health wants you to know it is okay to seek mental health help.

Ingrid Hartman, LPC, says there are signs you may be experiencing pandemic fatigue.

“If you are feeling more anxious or depressed but also if you are becoming more irritable, lonely and have an overall feeling of disconnect from others, these are all signs of pandemic fatigue,” Hartman says. “It is important to reach out and tell someone about these feelings.”

Hartman says there are coping skills you can practice to help with pandemic fatigue. She recommends trying to stay as active as possible. “I encourage you to get outside, enjoy the weather, and soak up the sunshine,” she adds. Another tip focus on the things you can control.

“There are so many things with the pandemic we cannot control, such as mask mandates and social distancing rules, it is better to focus on the things we can control. For example, limiting our exposure to media that can be upsetting. Information about COVID-19 is everywhere. Make sure you are tuned in to credible and reliable sources such as the Centers for Disease Control.”

Hartman says it is okay not to be okay and seek mental health help. AltaPointe Health has seen a dramatic increase in the use of telehealth across its continuum since the start of the pandemic. Even before the COVID-19 outbreak, it was evident that the popularity of virtual care was rising. Telehealth has allowed many people to garner up the courage and confidence to seek mental health treatment for the first time.

Behavioral Health leaders say the pandemic’s exact toll on mental health is unknown but expect more people to seek mental health help. AltaPointe Health provides COVID Crisis Counseling through a program called Alabama Apart Together. The program is funded by an Alabama Department of Mental Health and Federal Emergency Management Agency grant.

The counseling and information are available over the phone, virtually, and in some cases in person.
It is confidential or even anonymous and at no cost to those utilizing the service. To access Alabama Apart Together, call toll-free (866) 752-3418.

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