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8 tips to cope in a crisis

Man feeling depressed

Optum Perks Author

By Optum Perks Author

People react differently to stressful situations. COVID-19 has just about everyone on edge.

If you and your family are home during the crisis, you may feel anxious, lonely, bored or frustrated.

Here are some tips for helping take care of your mental health during this time.

  1. Look for ways to relax. Find things that help you manage stress. Consider trying deep breathing, stretching or meditation. There are also apps that may help you deal with stress.
  1. Set boundaries. While it’s important to have up-to-date, reliable information, you should limit your time watching and reading media coverage.
  1. Create routines. For example, consider setting up a regular routine for physical activity, communicating and connecting with others and continuing other day-to-day habits.
  1. Make a contact list. Gather a list of friends, family, neighbors, health care providers, therapists or counselors, and other community resources. Place it somewhere prominent in your home.
  1. Check your medications. Make sure you have any prescription and/or over-the-counter medications you need. Take your prescriptions as recommended. If possible, try to have a two-week supply on hand. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist to learn how you can get what you need.  Visit Optum Perks to see if you can save on your prescriptions
  1. Define how you’ll stay connected. Establish how you’ll communicate with friends and family through available methods — text, phone calls, over the internet or even through letters in the mail. Consider “face-to-face” time using apps that allow you to videochat with others.

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  1. Keep up with healthy habits. Your physical health is an important part of your mental health, during a quarantine and always. Avoid using tobacco, alcohol or other drugs to try to manage stress. Get plenty of rest and physical activity.
  1. Be aware of stress. A quarantine may cause additional stress. For example, you may experience financial stress if you are unable to work. Talk with your employer about why you may be missing work. If need be, contact the U.S. Department of Labor at 1-866-487-2365 about the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The FMLA offers employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for dealing with a serious medical condition for yourself or to care for a loved one.