Tools to help with mental health for Kentuckians

2020 has been an unprecedented year for Kentuckians. Beyond the physical health threats of COVID-19, many in Kentucky continue to grapple with loss, isolation, frustration and financial hardships creating a strain on their mental health.

Finding tools to cope with grief, stress and trauma can lead to a longer and more productive life.

The rise of COVID-19, upcoming election and ongoing social unrest in the Commonwealth have understandably increased the need for mental health services and awareness. Knowing where to find help, get treatment for mental health issues and access integrated care is often an issue for Kentuckians.

Oct. 10 is World Mental Health Day and Mental Health Awareness Week takes place Oct. 4 to 10.

Resources in Kentucky and Across the U.S. for Mental Health

NAMI Kentucky works to raise awareness about mental health, advocate for policy issues for effective and timely treatment of mental health issues, and provide support services to help prevent suicides, violence, homelessness, and incarceration. NAMI provides programming and services throughout the Commonwealth including virtual support groups during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s treatment locator offers an online resource for addiction and mental health treatment. Kentuckians can search for help nearby by ZIP code: https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/.

Virtual Tools for Anxiety and Stress

Mental health support providers are more accessible than ever with a variety of apps and virtual platforms. Well-known therapy app Talkspace connects you with a licensed therapist to chat one-on-one. Apps can be an effective and low-cost way to access these services from home with or without insurance. Forbes recently outlined several budget-friendly ways to support your mental health including tips on finding insurance to cover services.

Meditation apps and apps for managing anxiety can also be helpful to track and deal with anxiety and depression. Calm is a popular mindfulness app with guided meditations and sounds and stories to help with sleeping.

Help A Fellow Kentuckian

Look to your friends and fellow Kentuckians to see if someone you care about is struggling and start a conversation. Many people can benefit from mental health services but don’t know how to access them.

Build a better Kentucky by caring for yourself and others. We’re all in this together!

Rachel Nix

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