COVID-19 has changed the world in many ways. When it comes to mental health in the United States, the CDC reports 31% of adults have had symptoms of anxiety or depression over the past year.
- 13% reported having started or increased substance use
- 26% reported stress-related symptoms
- 11% reported having serious thoughts of suicide in the past 30 days
These numbers are nearly double the rates we would have expected before the pandemic.
Closer to home, according to the American Heart Association, 23% of Milwaukee County adults report having a mental health condition. During this time, it is crucial we take care of our entire well-being but especially mental health.
One thing you can control and take action on, to improve your mental health, is positive self-talk. Dr. Alan Chu, from the University of Wisconsin Green Bay, has three steps to train the brain into positive self-talk: recognize, re-frame and refocus.
- Recognize the negative self-talk occurring in your mind
- Re-frame those emotions
- Refocus to control your own outcome.
There are also apps such as Headspace and Calm that can help with guided meditation and deep breathing techniques. Even 5 minutes a day will make a tremendous difference but remember the key is practice.
For more in depth mental health information see resources below: