COVID-19 has brought about many changes this year. These changes have affected everyone of all ages and has caused more stress than a person might normally be able to handle. Some older adults may feel extremely isolated since they cannot physically see family and friends. Others may have lost their job or their hours were cut and the mortgage is due. Working from home may include the added pressures of home schooling grandchildren, pets running in and out, and a multitude of other issues that makes them feel as if they are losing control. Stress can have such a horrendous impact on all of us no matter what the cause or what age we are. If you or someone you know just can’t handle life anymore, the National Alliance on Mental Illness Hawaii (NAMI) asks you to consider the following when reaching out for help:
◆ If it’s an emergency in which you or someone you know is suicidal, immediately call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, call 911 or go to a hospital emergency room. DO NOT leave a suicidal person alone.
◆ If you can wait a few days, make an appointment with your primary healthcare provider or pediatrician if you think you or your loved one’s condition is mild to moderate.
◆ If the symptoms are more severe, make an appointment with a specialized doctor, such as a psychiatrist or therapist. You may need to contact your primary healthcare provider for a referral.
◆ Seek out support groups in your community and educate yourself about symptoms and diagnoses. Social support and knowledge can be valuable tools for coping. Contact NAMI Hawaii or go online for information.
◆ If you or your loved one is in school or college, contact the school and ask about its support services.
◆ Remember that you are a partner in your own or your loved one’s treatment. You can ask the healthcare provider questions and be a part of decisions about your treatment. If your family member or friend is an adult who doesn’t want treatment, it can be difficult to get them help. But you will still benefit from learning as much as you can and finding support groups for yourself. Your NAMI Hawaii and healthcare providers can advise you on how to offer encouragement and keep yourself and your loved one safe. NAMI Hawaii offers free support and educational services online.
NAMI HAWAII (501(c) 3 nonprofit)
5240, 770 Kapiolani Blvd. # 613, Honolulu, HI 96813
808-591-1297 | firstname.lastname@example.org
NAMI Hawaii provides free support, education, information and resources for people who are struggling with or impacted by mental illness.