Millions of people in the U.S. are affected by mental illness each year. It’s important to measure how common mental illness is, so we can understand its physical, social and financial impact — and so we can show that no one is alone. These numbers are also powerful tools for raising public awareness, stigma-busting and advocating for better health care.
The information on these infographics and this page comes from studies conducted by organizations like Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Justice. The terminology used reflects what is used in original studies. Terms like “serious mental illness,” “mental illness” or “mental health disorders” may all seem like they’re referring to the same thing, but in fact refer to specific diagnostic groups for that particular study.
You Are Not Alone
Mental Health Care Matters
Provided by NAMI
With all of the new stressors impacting each of us during this time, we now more than ever need to take proactive steps to be mindful and find joy in our days. Although we cannot simply wish the pandemic away, we can add a few simple activities to help us cope with our ever-evolving reality.
Below we are sharing a list of what some of our providers here at Compass Point are doing while working from home proving tele-therapy, a list of what our clinicians have recommended to their clients as well as a general list inspired by Marsha Linehan, professor of psychology at the University of Washington, and the creator of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), of activities that can be accomplished in limited time, within ones own home. Many of the items are also friendly for families with young children.
A lot of our clients familiar with DBT will know that our groups use lists like this to help participants identify activities they can use to boost their mood and cope with challenges. While many of us need this in the best of times, most of us need to find what works and how to find balance again in the wake of COVID-19.
What we're doing at Compass Point
Our team at Compass Point have been working remotely from home offering tele-therapy and practicing social distancing for over a month now. I asked them to share the activities and behaviors that have been helping them.
Compass Point Clinicians share their tips
Since sessions have still been taking place via tele-therapy, clinicians have given quite a few activities they have been recommending to clients to de-stress. I asked them to share a few with us.
Looking for more ideas?
The below list is inspired by Marsha Linehans list of distracting, pleasurable activities
Our Feelings During This Weird Time in our History
Talking to clients, family and friends about the quarantine, I am hearing many of the same things. “I’m feeling tired. This is getting old. I don’t know what to do with my time. I’m really irritable. When is this going to end? This is making me more anxious than I had been. I feel sad. I feel depressed. What’s going to happen with my kid’s school? What’s going to happen to my job? What does the new normal look like?” It is so normal to have any and all of these feelings and questions. Basically, all of us have had our lives turned upside down by this virus and quarantine.
I know the moms and dads who are trying to work from home and monitor their kid’s school work are very stressed. The people who work in restaurants are wondering when and if they will have a job. Students are missing proms, graduations and most of all just being with friends. Kids who need structure are not adapting well to distance learning, not to mention the teachers who were given no time to adapt lesson plans. College students who are graduating wonder when and if they will be able to get a job. And, over and above all the anxiety producing situations each of us are in, we all have the over- arching worry about the virus itself, “Will I get it, will someone I love get it?” It is scary!
So, again, all normal to be stressed, anxious, sad, afraid, but we can all have hope this quarantine will not last forever. In the meantime, we can do things to help ourselves through this time. We can use coping strategies.
I watched a brief training from trauma expert, Bessel von der Kolk and he discussed how this quarantine has Preconditions for Trauma. He talked about why this is true, but more importantly, he gave ideas on how to navigate through this time to come out the other end feeling OK. Here are the problems he outlined and the ways we can combat the effects:
The important thing is to know you are not alone in this. All of us have struggles of some sort. This is a time to be gentle on yourself, to treat yourself like you would treat your best friend and remind yourself you will be OK. This, too, shall pass.
Monday Morning April 13th, doing our best to be at arms length and beyond to stay healthy and give you the best information we can find. I am working on getting Dr.Amy Acton, Local area Hospitals and other medical professionals to here how it is here.
Dr. Charles Roberts joins us right now. Dr.Roberts is a mental health expert. Dr, what we know is that anytime things change for people, like that book "who moved my cheese" and all that. Thats hard for some people. Isn't it? its like "my daily routine is upset, so I am not very happy."
That is so true. Good morning, Joel . Good to be with you.
When you talk about those kinds of things, what are best practices? What can I do to impact my mental state, my physical state, and make things easier for me moving forward?
Well, you started off talking about routine and I think you are right on it with that. Our brains use routines to streamline information. We are constantly filtering out what is important or not important and routines really help us do that. Like were going to listen to one radio station at a time, so when we have all kinds of upset in routines like what we have right now. Its like listening to multiple radio stations all at one time, not super effective and overloading. That is excatly what is going on.
Thats the thing though. People are so hungry for information about the Cornonavirus, its spread, its impact, if I do get this will there be people available to take care of me? Those kinds of things, how do you step away from that kind of information when that is all that people seem to care about right now?
Dr. Roberts - Well, you kind of have to force yourself to do it. Part of it really is setting a routine. Setting a time to check in with the outside world. A time to check the news, a time to do all that. People joke about "wine with Dewine" here in Ohio, but I think that gives people a time to sit down do that and then say okay, now the rest of the day I am going to do things that I need to do, focus on things close to home, that I can control.
Right. Is it just the nature of being productive? Like, hey, I cant go to work, I am not doing what I normally do, so I am going to identify things around the house and get those done so I have a sense of accomplishment?
Accomplishments part of it, but part of it is just staying busy and keeping your mind occupied. Practice being mindful. At any one thing at any point on time.
There is the whole "alone together" thing too. I get the concept of it, but I am missing being around people. Usually by 8/8:30 this place is vibrant. I mean, 70/80/90 employees. Communication people we tend to be kind of loud. Were mixing it up and were having fun. This morning there's like 8 people here. I am going home after work. I love my wife, I love my son, but I don't have any contact with buddies or going out to dinner, being in crowds. How can you handle that loneliness?
Well, Joel. you're even one of the lucky ones. Cause you're getting out and seeing 8 people each day. That's pretty good. Our brains are required to have new experiences. Were not meant to be isolated, even isolated alone with the same people, its isolated. No new experiences, no new information, no new jokes. You know, its like sitting with the same people all the time, intellectual inbreeding. So reaching out and face timing and using some of this technology that we have. Its really, really interesting it can help a lot.
Its funny, yesterday, my wife was cooking for Easter and my folks live about 20 miles from us so I texted them that we were going to bring a little care package. We did that and we sat outside and talked, even though it wasnt particularly warm, but they're both in their 80s so were very concerned about spreading anything. We may not be showing symptoms, we could have it and we dont want them to get it. So is that even relatively in the realm of okay? We sat the chairs 10 feet apart just so we can kid of see each other, or do you recommend the face time and the electronic things like that? Is that a better way to handle it.
I am always a fan of getting as much personal contact as possible. As long as that can be done safetly, following the CDCs social distancing guidelines right now, I think thats great. Human contact is important.
No doubt. I wonder too, people who are depressed or have anxiety, theyre looking back theyre looking ahead. A lot of people right now, they're looking ahead and wondering, Is it going to get to May first and is it going to be May 15th or wait till June. Once I get back, what am I going back to? So what can I do to answer those questions so I am not as anxious about whats to come?
I think you mentioned that people with anxiety look forward a lot about what is to come and there is a lot that we do not know. There is a lot that we do know though. Our families will still be our families (as long as we dont run them out of the house while social distancing) you know, were still going to have some semblance of American life. Some things will transition, but that's looking forward. If you keep yourself grounded in the present, this moment now, I mean look how different our lives are now. It wont be this different. It will be more like what it used to be. So the big thing has already happened.
Thats a good point. This is as low as it gets and we should be on the upward swing. So, you know, that should buoy your spirits a little bit. I am curious too. I dont know there will be necessarily a social war or civil war over it, but there are going to be people who are released to work first. Whatever essential worker means, there will some companies will say you're good to go or there will be testing that is released and some people will be able to get a hold of it quicker and theyll be cleared to work. How do I fight that feeling. How do I fight the jealous or upset feelings that someone else gets to get back to their life quicker than I do?
I think its more of a mindset framing for ourselves. Were all part of a team here. If you look at our economy its so connected. All the different business, the people who are repairing things they have to go to the part store, the transportation has to be there. All that is still going to happen, that needs to happen. So its all going to get turned on, just we don't know in what order.
Fascinating. Thats the thing, a lot of times when you're just a cog in the wheel and your doing what you do everyday you dont really have to consider that. Dr. That was a lot great information and things for people to think about and hopefully work through so when we do get the green light we can get back to it and everyone will be happy and healthy moving forward.
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“Teletherapy is the online delivery of speech, occupational, and mental health therapy services via high-resolution, live video conferencing.”
Teletherapy, also known as online therapy, e-therapy, or video therapy, is therapy delivered through a virtual platform via a computer. If you’ve ever used FaceTime or Skype, it’s essentially the same thing – except secure and with a qualified therapist or counselor at the other end. Tele- Therapy is considered a highly effective method for therapy delivery.
Why should you consider Tele-Therapy?
Access to care, for you or your loved ones, wherever you are.
Convenient hours—day, evening and weekend sessions to work with your schedule
3. Safe + Secure
Safe, secure and easy-to-use platforms that are HIPAA compliant
4. Reduced Wait
At Compass Point we are able to get new appointments scheduled within days, not weeks.
Insurance companies do cover tele-therapy. Compass Point accepts most commercial insurance plans, Medicare and credit card payments
6. Specialized care
See a provider who specializes in the concern bringing you in. This is great for small towns who lack local resources or where specialized care like DBT are unavailable.
At compass Point you will meet with the some clinician at every appointment. This means you can connect and grow with someone who knows you.
FACE COVID offers a set of practical steps for responding effectively to the Corona crisis, using the principles of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT).
F = Focus on what’s in your control
A = Acknowledge your thoughts & feelings
C = Come back into your body
E = Engage in what you’re doing
C = Committed action
O = Opening up
V = Values
I = Identify resources
D = Disinfect & distance
Russ Harris is an internationally acclaimed acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) trainer and author of the best-selling ACT-based self-help book The Happiness Trap, which has sold more than 600,000 copies and has been published in thirty languages. He is widely renowned for his ability to teach ACT in a way that is simple, clear, and fun—yet extremely practical.
As boredom sets in during this COVID-19 crisis, I have noticed the increased need for structure and a schedule. So, the age-old question becomes even more pertinent: where do I begin?
I really can’t begin to label or quantify the value of good self-care. Humans are equipped with amazing capabilities to self-regulate…if only we had the energy and desire to use them! In DBT, there is a skill (acronym) called the PLEASE skill, and I believe it is the answer to the question posed above.
I am going to focus on three components of PLEASE: Sleeping, Eating, and Exercising.
Sleep. Just do it, stop fighting it…put your Smartphone away and close your eyes. Did you know that your brain cannot convert anything into memory until you are asleep? The Disney Pixar movie Inside Out had a lot of great content that helps drive this point home (it was quite factually accurate!). In the movie, the main character Riley didn’t have her memory balls moved from short-term memory into her long-term memory until she slept! Our bodies are not machines; on a cellular level your body needs sleep to repair itself. Sleep allows time for the immune system to do its job and ward off viruses and bacterial infections. During this time of illness-anxiety, sleep is a kind gesture you can do for yourself to maximize the immunity in your own body! Sleep will also help you reduce your overall stress level. So next time you want to watch the next episode on Netflix, play the next level on a game, or return one more e-mail, ask yourself what you need more: your health and sanity or screen time…
Eat. A balanced diet helps alleviate mood swings. We (generalizing for Americans) live on a cycle of sugar highs and sugar lows. We have a habit of eating low quality breakfast (…if we eat any breakfast at all…) which floods the brain with chemicals and overwhelms our neuro-functioning; this results in you feeling hyper, a spike of motivation, and a burst of energy (yay!). As a result of this flooding however; our bodies secrete insulin to suck up all the sugar like a vacuum leaving us feeling lethargic and moody (not so yay…). This cycle repeats itself after lunch and dinner as well. Think about it…when do you reach for the candy bar? 10am, 2pm, 9pm…a few hours after each meal! Eating a balanced diet of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats ensures that our food (including a healthy amount of sugar) gets broken down over time and reduces that roller coaster of moodiness. While in quarantine, I want you to focus on mindful eating and try to keep it balanced and healthy!
Exercise. I feel like this is a mute point in some ways. My goal is not to be preachy; it is to motivate you into action. The science behind working out is limitless and boils down to this: if you move your body your mind will feel better. Physical exercise can helps your brain secret endorphins, adrenaline, and dopamine…all of which alleviate depressive symptoms. Consider for a moment the cost of getting those chemicals elsewhere: prescription drugs, theme parks, extramarital affairs… Are those effective or realistic on a regular basis? Exercise also builds mastery. If you become fluent and experienced in a form of movement (yoga, running, lifting weights) it will build your confidence and overall satisfaction in life. What can you do from home? I have seen a wide variety of online videos being posted on Facebook from different organizations, there are a seemingly limitless supply on YouTube, or you could go for a walk around your neighborhood.
For the full PLEASE skill, please refer to this graphic:
update - offices begin reopening on May 04,2020
Dear friend of Compass Point,
Out of concern for the health of our clients and staff members, and in light of steps taken by the State of Ohio in the last few days to reduce the risk of transmission of the Coronavirus, we have made the decision to close our offices and to discontinue all in-person therapy sessions until we receive confirmation from regional health authorities that the threat of transmission has passed. This policy becomes effective Monday, March 16, 2020 at 8:00 a.m.
During this period, we will replace in-person therapy with telehealth sessions. Our telehealth platform is HIPAA-compliant, tailored to behavioral health sessions and user-friendly. Sessions delivered via telehealth are reimbursable by commercial insurance and Medicare at the same rate as in-person visits. And we are able to accept payments for sessions, deductibles and co-pays/co-insurances via credit card. All clients require for a telehealth session is a personal computer or a mobile phone with webcam and an Internet connection.
If you currently have a session scheduled at one of our locations, a member of our team will be contacting you to reschedule using our telehealth platform. Please be aware they are calling from personal phones, so the number may show up to as a blocked or restricted caller.
Now that Compass Point has settled into Tele-therapy, we are hoping to serve our community with additional resources.
Things like; mental health tips, mindful minutes, activities to do with kids, etc.
If this is something you would benefit from, please comment below with a topic you would love to hear more about as well as what platform you would prefer to see it on (ie, our blog vsfacebook live.)
Thank you for your flexibility during this time. We’re grateful to continue to serve the healthcare needs of our community.
Your friends at Compass Point Counseling Services
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Social Stories are proven to be an excellent tool for helping children on the spectrum deal with new or unfamiliar social events. Developed by Carol Gray in 1991, they have greatly improved social skills in autistic children.
What is a social story?A social story is a narrative made to illustrate certain situations and problems and how people deal with them. They help children with autism understand social norms and learn how to communicate with others appropriately.
Who developed Social Stories?The Social Stories concept was developed by child pediatrician Dr. Carol Gray in the early 1990s. Dr. Gray started writing these for the autistic children she worked with. In 1993, she published her first book and has since published several more on this subject.
How to write a social story for autism?A helpful story:
What are comic strip conversations?Comic strip conversations are simple illustrations that show two or more people having a conversation using short sentences. Some children with autism learn better with visuals, so creating comic strips can be an effective tool. Constructing cartoon strips for kids is an enjoyable way for young people to communicate their thoughts and feelings while building the imagination.
What do Social Stories help with?Social Stories support kids with autism by:
These stories are generally written in a sentence format. There are seven basic sentences that are generally used in its construction for children with special needs. These are:
Some benefits to creating Social Stories for autistic childrenThese stories help kids learn how to respond to daily situations or events appropriately. A 2015 study of 30 children with autism, half of which went through Social Stories training, returned positive results. The experimental group who received a social story exhibited improved social interaction.
Here are some benefits of developing Social Stories:
Get up to date on the Ohio State Board Requirements at Compass Point's Best Practices In Private Practice training. Be sure to pass a potential audit from The Ohio Board as well as get your Ethics CEUs by attending this training! Link below.