These past months have been incredibly isolating. Prolonged isolation can trigger feelings of loneliness and depression. A recent study from the CDC suggests that the number of adults experiencing depression symptoms in the U.S. has tripled what it was before the pandemic. In response to the elevated levels of stress among Hoosiers, the Family Social and Services Administration’s Division of Mental Health and Addiction established the Be Well Crisis Helpline to provide counseling for those overwhelmed by the stressors of COVID-19.

Chances are someone you know is living with depression. What would you say to someone who you knew was struggling with depression? Would you feel comfortable talking to them about it? It’s normal not to know what to say or to feel worried that you will say the “wrong” thing. Don’t wait for them to reach out to you for help. Here’s what you can do to offer support and help people get the resources they need.

Virginia Aparicio is health and human services director with Purdue Extension Elkhart County. She can be reached at 574-533-0554 or  vaparici@purdue.edu.

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