Resources for Managing Mental Health and Stress Levels in Your Special Needs Family During Covid-19
We are in the midst of the winter holiday season as we enter the tenth month of the coronavirus pandemic. For many, especially the special needs students across the country, schools, programs, and services came to a screeching halt and have not resumed. In many areas, students with special needs have been cooped up at home every day, and those living in group homes have not gone out nor seen their loved ones in almost a year.
People of all ages and all abilities are struggling mightily. The special needs community is deeply affected, as special needs families often deal with heightened levels of stress on a regular basis – pandemic or not. The restrictions and stay-at-home orders drag on, leaving many isolated and lonely. Mental health resources are sorely needed as we face different and lonesome holidays during the darkest days of the year, as the sun sets around 4:30 in the afternoon.
While it’s not uncommon to feel worried, lonely, or sad about the potential bleakness of the holiday season, knowing you’re not alone doesn’t make us feel better. It’s important during this time to monitor your physical and mental health, as well as the health of your special needs children.
Children with special needs may experience more intense distress, worry, or anger, as they have less control over day-to-day events happening all around them. Often, children with special needs are keenly tuned in to the emotional state of people around them. This makes them a bit more sensitive and vulnerable to the negative effects of stress.
Below you will find, in no particular order, a great list of resources for managing your own mental health and stress levels, as well as that of your children. Each listing has a general heading or title to tell you what it’s for. Search for your area of need, or check out all of these resources. There’s no better time than the present for taking care of your family’s mental health.
Top 10 ideas to support a child with autism during covid
Don’t take mental health for granted
Don’t be hesitant or scared to get help
Be willing to admit you need help – there’s no shame
There’s a lot you can do to feel better
Kids with special needs need extra help managing stress
Crisis line: Text 741741
Suicide prevention lifeline: 800-273-8255
Disaster & distress helpline: 800-985-5990
Public Health Hotline: 916-875-2400 (Sacramento)
Text TalkWithUs to 66746
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Keri is a special needs parent and a veteran high school English and journalism teacher turned writer. She enjoys reading, hiking, gardening, cooking, traveling, wine tasting, and practicing yoga. Both she and her son love to create art. She has a passion for educating people on all things autism. Visit her blog at www.kerimehome.com.View All Posts