Prioritizing mental health

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Mental health is a topic that has been a big talker among health professionals since people started spending more time at home due to the pandemic.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Chantal Carter is a therapist and owner of NWA Therapy in Fayetteville, and said it’s normal for people to be feeling stressed, anxious, or unmotivated right now. She suggested a few things people should focus on to maintain good mental health:

  • Don’t over commit to productivity: She said we shouldn’t over commit to productivity. Many think now is a good time to tackle big projects. But Carter said it’s important to maintain a good balance. 
  • Stay connected: She said as humans we are social creatures, so it’s important to find ways to interact with each other while maintaining social distance.
  • Practice self care: Try not to get too bogged down with everyday tasks. 

“We have to carve out time to rest and relax and we have to carve out time to engage in enjoyable activities just for the sake of our pleasure,” Carter said. “That’s part of taking care of ourselves.”

According to Carter, mental health left unchecked could have a negative impact on our self confidence, moods, and relationships with other people. 

She said many people could benefit from therapy, but are often worried about what others would think.

“Let’s get rid of that stigma,” Carter said. “You should feel as comfortable going to talk to a therapist when you’re feeling sad or anxious or stressed out or overwhelmed as you would feel going to a doctor if you were having symptoms of a virus.”

Carter said many telehealth therapy service costs are currently waived due to the pandemic. Contact your insurance company to find out if it’s participating in that type of program.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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