Hi All, All of us at Delta School want to reach out and provide support to our Delta Community as we try to handle the uncertainty brought on by the Coronavirus (CoVid-19) pandemic.
As the counselor here at Delta, my plan is to check in with students and to let you know that I will be available to talk with you or your student during the coming weeks if you need support. I will ask that you send me an email so we can schedule a time to talk either by phone, email or possibly a video chat. My contact info is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Below I have included a few places to find community resources if you need them: ● Santa Cruz County Health Department is providing updated health & safety information about CoVid-19 on their website at: Santacruzhealth.org ● If you have further questions, call: United Way by dialing 211 or text covid19 to 211211. United Way also offers many community resources for help with housing, bills, food & counseling. ● Santa Cruz County Behavioral Health can provide assistance with Mental Health concerns for Medi-Cal clients at 1- 800-952-2335 or 831-454-4170. Call your primary care doctor if you have private insurance. If it is a crisis situation needing immediate attention dial 911. Since Delta School is currently transitioning from daily school attendance with Direct Instruction to a new platform of Distance Learning (online) to accommodate the “Shelter in Place” mandate in Santa Cruz County, there is probably a lot of anxiety and stress about how to adjust to these changes and what the impact is on our students and their families.
Suggestions to help your teen reduce stress, anxiety & depression (these can work for anyone!):
Stay connected - Socialize: Find new ways to be connected to friends, family, and co-workers - while remembering to be mindful of the requirement for “social distancing”. Use your phone, facetime, zoom, text, google hangout, or have virtual game nights or hangouts with friends.. There are plenty of activities online that you can coordinate doing with friends. We are social creatures and socialization can help reduce feelings of anxiety & depression
Keep a daily routine: Consistency can help reduce stress & anxiety. Do your online school work at the same time every day. Keep bedtimes and wake up times consistent. Develop an at home workout especially if you are used to going to the gym. Routine helps restore a bit of normalcy we are currently missing at this time.
Be kind and compassionate to yourself: Slow-down & appreciate simple pleasures in life. Don’t be hard on yourself. Try to complete a task everyday so you have a sense of accomplishment. This can help with depression.
Focus on what you can control instead of focusing on what you can’t by practicing self-care including: get enough sleep, eat healthy, hydrate, exercise & wash your hands. Understand that feelings of stress & anxiety are normal and valid especially as we are in an unprecedented time. It is okay to have these feelings during these uncertain times. Don’t let yourself get stuck in the negative thoughts, instead find activities to distract you and help you feel grounded again.
Limit your Social Media/News Exposure: Remember to take a break from the News and social media as this barrage of information can contribute to fear and anxiety feelings.
Keep it all in perspective: Follow the recommended precautions- Social distancing, handwashing, etc but remember that most people recover from the virus.
Remember Fear & Anxiety are not all bad: In small doses they help motivate us to protect ourselves from potential harm.
8. To reduce feelings of anxiety, stress and depression try practicing relaxation techniques or engage in activities you enjoy: Try breathing exercises, meditation, exercise (walk, run, bike, skate, yoga, etc....just move), work on a hobby, build a craft or talk with friends. Keeping busy with pleasurable activities can help us feel more calm and in control. 9. Get sunlight: Go for a walk, sit in the yard and enjoy the outdoors. It can make us feel better and vitamin D is good for our mental health.