In times of crisis and uncertainty, anxious thoughts and feelings can be overwhelming. The deluge of information around the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has the nation’s nerves on edge. As Ulster County begins to report deaths from the illness, fears can be triggered with each update.
Remember you are not alone. There are resources available. Also, remember that we are not the only ones experiencing these feelings - the messages our children are receiving, unfiltered, may be alarming and confusing. The overabundance of “fake news” circulating has many Americans either over or under suspicious of information - unsure of what is reliable and credible. This can further stoke anxieties. How many of us really know the right things to be saying to our kids during these times?
Compassion, mindfulness, and patience top the list of resources we already have available within us to cope. The better prepared we are with those “tools,” the less challenging it can be to help ourselves and our loved ones through these times. Moreover, taking extra good care of ourselves right now -- such as getting enough sleep, exercising, and eating a balanced diet -- models important behavior our children will notice. It will have a lasting impact on them, informing them how to handle difficult situations.
Organizations on the forefront of COVID-19 and other epidemics, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), offer dependable and trustworthy resources for individuals and families looking for information on how to talk to our kids as well as how to take care of our own selves during this time.
Consider reviewing these resources for useful tips about caring for your family’s mental health:
How to talk to your children about COVID-19 (videos):
- Ulster County COVID 19 Hotline: 845.443.8888
- NYS Coronavirus Hotline: 888.364.3065
- Family of Woodstock crisis phone line: 845.338.2370 (24-hour availability)
- New York State Crisis text line: Text 741-741 (24-hour availability)
- Textmeback.org: Text and Chat line: 845.679.2485
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1.800.273.8255 (24-hour availability)
Who to contact about COVID-19:
Ulster County COVID-19 Hotline 845.443.8888
NYS Coronavirus Information Hotline: 888.364.3065
Department of Health and Mental Health of Ulster County: 845.340.3150
Orange County Department of Health: 845.291.2332
Food and Shelter Locally
Food Pantries accessible by UCAT bus/Despensa de Alimentos por UCAT autobus
Childcare for Emergency Workers/Essential Employees
YMCA offers childcare beginning March 23 at Lenape Elementary. Visit this website OR call
845.338.3810, ext. 110
Call your doctor: If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately.