[UPDATED, April 29, 2020]:
With extension and tightening of circuit breaker measures, allied health services outside of the public healthcare institutions will be classified as essential services from April 29.
This includes rehabilitation or therapy services, and other allied health services including counselling, social work and psychology, though with restrictions in place to reduce movements and interactions.
Telephone and online services will still be available for those who need to speak to someone during this period.
Perhaps it is worrying about potentially losing your job, finding it difficult to cope with work from home and home-based learning arrangements or simply feeling trapped due to the strict stay-home guidelines. These feelings of fear, stress and isolation can easily overwhelm and take over during these uncertain times of Covid-19.
Already in other countries around the world, people are finding it increasingly difficult to cope. In Indonesia, being isolated has led to cabin fever and people talking to stray cats, while in Hong Kong, there has been a rise in the number of mental health patients.
Sandro Galea, Dean and Robert A. Knox Professor at Boston University of Public Health in an interview with the World Economic Forum said, "The fact that social isolation is associated with poor mental health is unquestionable". He suggested keeping to a routine, exercising and keeping connected with loved ones via technology as ways to mitigate the toll.
While there are tips you can follow to keep calm, everyone is built differently and manages stressors and anxiety differently. Needing help should not be seen as a sign of weakness.
Psychological treatment may have been classified as a non-essential service in Singapore during the current circuit breaker, but the good news is that help is still available via phone and online.
Here's where you can go to seek help or simply if you need someone to talk to.
National CARE Hotline: 1800 202 6868
Institute of Mental Health's Mental Health Helpline: +65 6389 2222
PAVE Integrated Services for Individual and Family Protection: +65 6555 0390
Samaritans of Singapore: 1800 221 4444
Silver Ribbon Singapore: +65 6385 3714/+65 6386 1928/+65 6509 0271
TOUCHline counselling: 1800 377 2252
Care Singapore: +65 6978 2728
Click here for AsiaOne's Circuit Breaker Survival Guide (CBSG).
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