Access to mental health treatment moving online

Posted at 7:51 AM, May 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-01 23:24:38-04

Many people are experiencing mental health challenges for this first time during this pandemic as many of us are stuck at home, unemployed or worried we might get sick.

But mental health treatment can't take place in person for now, meaning much of it has moved to the telehealth or online space.

Terry McGuire has been running a podcast called Giving Voice to Depression, and is active on social media more than ever as people need messages of hope during what seems like an endless pandemic.

"They say one in five people is going to have a mental health issue and given here right now I think five and five of us are feeling some sort of anxiety," she said.

McGuire said while some people who are used to living with depression or other mental health challenges, those who are new to it may be having a harder time during this pandemic.

For people dealing with these emotions for the first time, Mental Health America of Wisconsin has set up an online screening tool to help you sort out your feelings.

It can tell you if what you're feeling is perfectly normal, or if you should consider seeking help.

"It's the first time, people who have never sought mental health services previously are experiencing increased anxiety and don't really have the coping strategies or tools," said Martina Gollin-Graves, Community and Digital Outreach Specialist at Mental Health America of Wisconsin.

Gollin-Graves said they have moved their outpatient programs to telehealth, and so far they've gotten a positive response.

"Not only are people engaging, but they're also staying engaged in services and meeting with people regularly," she said.

They're helping people understand that they are not alone, despite feeling isolated.

"Be gentle with yourself, you know, we're all doing the best we can," McGuire said.

There are a number of resources out there for people struggling. Here's what MHA is offering through this pandemic.

Here are some of them:

To learn more about Giving Voice to Depression, visit their site, Facebook Page or listen to their podcast

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