The current COVID-19 crisis is placing countries, families, and individuals under significant pressure and stress. We encourage everyone to reach out to support their family, friends, neighbours and communities. While it is heartening to see the community stand together in the face of this adversity, we acknowledge that many people are also struggling. High levels of stress can be associated with an increased risk of child maltreatment so looking after yourself is important.
During times of high stress self-care is essential. Here are some tips to help you manage during this time:
- Follow the recommended health guidelines. This will protect both you and others.
- Try to maintain a routine where possible. For example, even if you are working from home, get up and dressed at the regular time.
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Eat healthily, exercise (within social distancing guidelines), get plenty of sleep, and try to avoid excess alcohol or substance use.
- Limit excessive news consumption.
- Ensure you get information from reliable government and media sources like the Centres For Disease Control and Prevention, The World Health Organisation, or your local government health department. This helps avoid unnecessary alarm from sensationalist media (or social media) stories.
- Stay connected. Use phone and video services to find ways to remain connected to friends and family. Physical isolation doesn’t mean you should feel alone.
- Make time to relax and unwind. Taking a break is especially important if you have children and is even more important if you have additional responsibilities such as home-schooling. Find a little time to do something for yourself each day.
- Accept that this is the new normal (for now) and find ways to make life fun and meaningful. Look out for the positives in life like the good news stories.
- Remember this is temporary and with time current restrictions will lift.
- Keep track of how you are feeling. Reach out to friends and family routinely but even more so if you are struggling during this time. Talk to people about how you are feeling.
If you are feeling overwhelmed with emotions or are in need of further support please contact one of the support agencies listed here. or contact your GP who can provide a telehealth consult and referral if needed.
If you or your child is at risk of immediate harm please contact appropriate agencies (as listed above) or the police.