The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted life as we know it. From stores and restaurants closing, to government recommendations self-isolate, there’s lots of confusion and anxiety over what the future holds.
As the virus started to spread around the world, the Kid’s Help Phone noticed an uptick in youth reaching out.
“The increase over the weekend was 350 per cent higher than we have experienced before.”
“We’ve seen our text conversations double overnight,” said Shelley Richardson, Director of Development for Quebec and Atlantic Canada.
The national organization has since put out a plea for more volunteers to help deal with the influx of calls which is not expected to drop anytime soon.
“They’re scared, they’re uncertain, we’re all in that same situation. Life just isn’t normal for them and that’s being communicated to our staff regularly,” said Richardson about the youth.
But it’s not just youth. With governments recommending people practice social distancing, and self-isolate, Dr. Adriana Wilson, a psychiatrist with Inspired Living Medical says it will have an impact on people’s mental health.
“This is a time of uncertainty, and it’s a human response to have some distress and periods of overerwhelm.”
Wilson says one of the most important things will be to maintain social connections.
“We know that one of the primary sources of comfort for humans is connection,” said Wilson.
While it’s recommended that people do not physically connect, Wilson says thanks to technology there are all sorts of ways people can stay connected.
“Things like FaceTime, Skype, text or email will be absolutely essential.”
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