Don't dismiss your feelings
Your mental health and the pandemic
Thinking about your mental health may not have been on your mind with all that’s been going on. But the pandemic may be taking a toll on your mental health.
Many people are grieving the loss of friends and loved ones to COVID-19. Some are still picking up the pieces of a lost business or career and trying to figure out what’s next. Parents worry about how remote schooling and canceled activities are affecting their kids.
How are you coping?
Now, more than ever, it’s time to take care of your mental health, for yourself and those you love. Take stock of your feelings, moods, actions, even your social well-being. Are you eating and sleeping well? Do you rely on alcohol or cannabis more than normal?
These are all part of your mental health. Your mental health can affect how you feel every day, deal with stress and relate to those around you. It also can affect your physical health. Depression, for instance, can raise your risk of heart disease and stroke.
People of color, already hard hit by COVID-19, had more stress and mental health challenges in 2020, research suggests. Yet, a recent Anthem study found that black members had 7 percent fewer mental health visits than white members.
You may want to think about getting help from a health care provider if you:
- Feel down or sad
- Find it hard to do daily tasks
- Feel extreme worry, fear, guilt or anger
- Feel fatigued
- Use alcohol, cannabis, other drugs or cigarettes more than normal
- Have major changes in eating or sleeping habits
- Think of harming yourself or others
Where to start
Taking charge of your mental health can help you feel better, deal with COVID concerns and stay healthy! You may find that self-care activities ease your stress and help you feel better. You can try exercise, meditation, taking breaks, connecting with others and doing something you enjoy every day.
Use your health plan
The good news is that mental health symptoms often improve with talk therapy and medications. Both are services that your health plan covers.
Getting the care you need is easy. It’s like getting other health care services. If you’re seeking mental health care for the first time, these tips can help:
Feeling some stress is normal, especially during a pandemic. But use your benefits if you think you need help. Tufts Health Plan is here to help you feel your best physically and emotionally.