Thursday, November 19, 2020

DHHS: Mental Health and Substance Abuse Help Available

Posted By on Thu, Nov 19, 2020 at 12:05 PM

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The Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services would like to remind residents of the resources available for residents who are feeling increased mental health crises and substance use due to the isolation of COVID-19 lockdowns.

“It’s important that the community knows that Behavioral Health services are available,” DHHS Behavioral Health Substance Use Disorder Administrator Raena  West said. “We invite people to call so we can explain the expanded services available to meet people where they are in their recovery. You’re not alone. We know times are tough right now, and we are here to help.”
If you are experiencing mental health or substance abuse challenges please call the Substance Use Disorder Services at 476-4054, the Behavioral Health Warm Line 268-2999 or the 24-Hour Behavioral Health Crisis Line 445-7715.

West adds that the pandemic can be especially challenging for those experiencing addiction, in recovery from a substance use disorder, suffering from mental health issues and those in at-risk populations cited by the CDC.

According to the release, a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report found that "U.S. adults reported increased anxiety and depression symptoms, trauma and stress-related symptoms, new or increased substance use and having seriously considered suicide in the last month."

The report states that younger adults, racial/ethnic minorities, essential workers and unpaid adult caregivers have reported experiencing disproportionately worse mental health outcomes, increased substance use and elevated suicidal ideation.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration said that though the findings of the report are troubling, they aren't surprising.

“Research is clear on the effect of shutdown and social isolation on an individual’s mental health,” the organization stated. “The negative health effects are potentially long-lasting and very consequential for individuals and their families," the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services said.

Read the full CDC report here and the Humboldt DHHS press release below.

Nov. 19, 2020 - Resources Available for Mental Health and Substance Use Challenges

Mental health and substance use challenges are increasing as the pandemic stretches into the winter months, prompting local health officials to remind residents of resources that can be accessed remotely.

According to a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report on “Mental Health, Substance Use and Suicidal Ideation During the COVID-19 Pandemic,” U.S. adults reported increased anxiety and depression symptoms, trauma and stress-related symptoms, new or increased substance use and having seriously considered suicide in the last month.

“Younger adults, racial/ethnic minorities, essential workers and unpaid adult caregivers reported having experienced disproportionately worse mental health outcomes, increased substance use and elevated suicidal ideation,” the report states.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration stated the findings of the report are troubling, but unfortunately not surprising. “Research is clear on the effect of shutdown and social isolation on an individual’s mental health,” the organization stated. “The negative health effects are potentially long-lasting and very consequential for individuals and their families.”

Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) Behavioral Health Substance Use Disorder Administrator Raena West said the pandemic has been difficult on everyone and can especially be challenging for those experiencing addiction, in recovery from a substance use disorder, suffering from mental health issues and those in at-risk populations cited by the CDC.

“It’s important that the community knows that Behavioral Health services are available,” West said. “We invite people to call so we can explain the expanded services available to meet people where they are in their recovery. You’re not alone. We know times are tough right now, and we are here to help.”

DHHS resources include:

  • Substance Use Disorder Services — 707-476-4054
  • Behavioral Health Warm Line — 707-268-2999
  • 24-Hour Behavioral Health Crisis Line — 707-445-7715

To read CDC’s report, go to cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6932a1.htm


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Iridian Casarez

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Iridian Casarez is a staff writer at the North Coast Journal.

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