14 New Reasons Why People are Seeking Mental Health Help NOW

At Amen Clinics, a global leader in brain imaging related to psychiatry, we have helped tens of thousands of patients from over 120 countries enhance their brain health and get well. By the time our patients reach out to us for help, they’ve typically been suffering for quite a while. On average our patients have 4.2 diagnoses and have failed 3.3 providers and 5 medications before they come to us.

We routinely ask patients what drove them to seek our help, what was the last straw that made them pick up the phone. With the pandemic, it’s clear that people are experiencing a whole new array of issues that are driving them to ask for help.

Based on patients at Amen Clinics, here are 14 of the most common pandemic-related reasons why people say they are seeking psychiatric treatment now.

1. Nothing to distract from mental health issues.

Without the typical daily distractions, such as going to school or to the office, there is nothing to shield people from their struggles or the reality of their mental illness. It’s now front and center on a daily basis and demands attention.

2. Once-controlled problems are re-emerging.

People who had stabilized their mental health condition are now experiencing a return of symptoms they used to have under control. They need adjustments to treatment plans and additional strategies to help them through this challenging period.

3. Relationship issues have become inescapable.

Due to quarantine, couples are spending more time together at home with no respite from their relationship problems. This has led to more marital conflict, more frequent fights, and a more immediate need to address long-standing issues.

4. Kids’ ADD/ADHD can no longer be ignored.

Now that kids are stuck at home, their ADD/ADHD symptoms are becoming glaringly apparent to their parents. And if parents are doing homeschooling during the lockdown, they are seeing first-hand that their child’s learning challenges may be far more significant than they realized.

5. Youngsters’ issues are exacerbated.

For many young children, adolescents, and teens, it’s their friends, sports, and other extracurricular school activities that help keep them mentally stable. Without that support network and without the activities they love, their underlying mental health problems are becoming unbearable.

6. Increased substance use.

Due to the stress and anxiety of the pandemic, some people with addiction issues who had been sober are using again or thinking about using again and need help to combat those urges. In addition, some people who had previously been light or moderate drinkers are now developing a drinking problem and others are turning to drugs as a coping mechanism.

7. Job loss and financial insecurity.

The stress from a lack of work or unexpected financial instability is pushing some people over the edge and creating mental health problems or making existing ones worse.

8. Overwhelming uncertainty.

Feeling like everything is up in the air, that there is nothing you can count on, and that you can’t make any plans is extremely difficult to handle and is ramping up anxiety, depression, and other issues.

9. Suicidal thoughts.

For some people, the events of 2020 have been so traumatic that they are beginning to have suicidal thoughts and need professional help.

10. Loss of routine.

Daily schedules have gone out of the window, leading to a variety of lifestyle changes, such as sleep problems that exacerbate anxiety, depression, stress, and other mental health issues.

11. Emotional eating.

Quarantine has triggered a host of changes in eating patterns—giving up on healthy eating habits, overeating, consuming more sugary baked goods—all of which make mental health issues worse.

12. Irrational fears.

Months of being told that we are “safer at home” has led to agoraphobia, which is a type of anxiety in which you have an irrational fear of specific places, situations, or spaces. In some people, this phobia stems from the fear of contacting COVID-19 or passing it to a loved one.

13. Have tried it all, but nothing’s working.

Some people say they have “tried everything” to control their mental health issues, but they are still struggling and are looking for alternative approaches to treatment.

14. “Hitting the wall.”

A growing number of people are saying they’ve hit the wall with the pandemic, and they feel that they’ve reached the limit of their coping skills and need professional help.

Do you recognize yourself in these reasons? Have you reached the point where you could benefit from professional help? You’re not alone. No matter how impossible or unbearable your situation may seem, understand that there is hope. With the proper brain-centered treatment, you can overcome trauma, anxiety, depression, and loss and learn to thrive—even in the most awful situation.

Anxiety, depression, ADD/ADHD, and other mental health issues can’t wait. During these uncertain times, your mental well-being is more important than ever and waiting until life gets back to “normal” is likely to make your symptoms worsen over time.

At Amen Clinics, we’re here for you. We offer in-clinic brain scanning and appointments, as well as mental telehealth, remote clinical evaluations, and video therapy for adults, children, and couples. Find out more by speaking to a specialist today at 888-288-9834. If all our specialists are busy helping others, you can also schedule a time to talk.

8 Comments

  1. Thank you for noticing that something is BIG is going on. I realized that I don’t have the desire to cook healthy foods. It’s been the usual, chicken, salmon, potatoes, brown rice, frozen broccoli, chocolate covered almonds, etc. No time read books about health, life, etc

    Comment by Traci — August 19, 2020 @ 4:46 AM

  2. Do you ever offer scholarships or “free” services as a form of charity or a way to “give back” to the community?

    Comment by Roynette Brogpitti — August 19, 2020 @ 4:47 AM

  3. As a therapist in private practice, I too have experienced an increase in clients in the past few weeks. I agree with all the above issues as they too have been presented at my practice. People have reached the end of their rope, suicidal ideation, addictions, broken relationships, gripping fear and insecurity, hopelessness, worthlessness, lack of purpose, depression and the list goes on and on. I have so many requests for counseling that I can not handle the tremendous need. In addition, so many therapists have closed their offices rather then offering tele-counseling. I disinfect my office, provide social distancing and offer tele-counseling. As a therapist during this time, I believe we are more needed then ever. Thank you Dr. Amen for all you do.

    Comment by Ruth Altamura-Roll — August 19, 2020 @ 7:23 AM

  4. YOUR ABSOLUTELY CORRECT — THIS PANDEMIC IS CAUSING GREAT HARM AND WILL CONTINUE FOR SOME TIME TO COME……UNLESS WE AS A NATION RETURN TO MORE “NORMAL” WAY OF LIFE AS PRIOR TO PANDEMIC…..MIGHT HAVE BEEN PUT UPON US FOR POLITICAL REASONS RATHER THAN MEDICAL? THANKS FOR UR BEING THERE – HUGH HELP TO MANY JUST REVIEWING UR VARIOUS E-MAILS -RE – MENTAL HEALTH OVERALL – + INFO PROVIDED REGARDING YOUR SUPPLEMENTS…..BUSINESS IS BUSINESS – U HAVE GONE OVERBOARD IN EFFORT ATTEMPTING TO HELP AS MANY AS WOULD BE WISE ENOUGH TO RECEIVE UR HELP / PERSONAL/PROFESSIONAL/VIA UR SUPPLEMENTS ! I THANK AND APPLAUD U FOR DOING SO!

    GOD BLESS U AND YOUR -WIFE- AND PROFESSIONAL TEAM !

    Comment by JOSEPH — August 19, 2020 @ 7:39 AM

  5. This list seems accurate to me, but I might’ve put “irrational fears” much higher on the list.

    Comment by Kirsten Coulter — August 20, 2020 @ 4:58 AM

  6. All of my coping skills in my tool belt for anxiety just stopped working. I finally realized that my unhealed childhood trauma is knocking at my door, demanding attention and resolution. I am now working with a trauma therapist. There is a light in the middle of your darkness.

    Comment by Sharon — August 20, 2020 @ 7:31 AM

  7. Appreciate all the advice and work you do. I have read many if your books. Is there hope for us in Canada to obtain such services?

    Dealing with a suicidal young adult since he was a teen and we are desperate to find the right treatment. In some areas (amplified by the pandemic) it’s difficult to find psychological help. The waiting list is months away. Thank you.

    Comment by Mitch — August 20, 2020 @ 9:56 AM

  8. Hello Mitch, thank you for reaching out. At this time we only have clinics in the U.S.: https://www.amenclinics.com/locations/. We do offer telehealth options virtually, and we’d be happy to have our Care Coordinators reach out to you with more information or resources near you.

    Comment by Amen Clinics — August 20, 2020 @ 10:12 AM

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