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Mental Health and substance abuse disorders were heightened during the pandemic

Although the conversation may be hard for both you and your loved one, let them know you want to help, whatever that may look like for them.
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 5:57 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Depression and anxiety and tough things to deal with for many people. Studies show that during the pandemic, feelings coming as a result of depression and anxiety were heightened.

“I don’t know if the average person who doesn’t suffer from what I suffer from can say that they’ve experienced the absence of hope.” says Nick Mathews, a recovering heroin addict and founder of Stillwater behavioral health. “It’s a really dark place to be.”

Issues with substance abuse and mental health is quite a large issue spreading across the United States, and many people recognize that.

“This is such a national problem that we’re dealing with,” says Mathews. “I’ve been talking with people all across the country - from major cities to small communities - it’s affecting people. Over the last twelve months, we’ve had more overdose deaths than we’ve ever had in recorded history.”

Mental health and substance abuse disorders also affect their family and friends.

John Brannen from Recovery in Motion says there are a few things to remember before having that difficult conversation.

“Don’t take whatever they are doing personal, if they are angry and upset, maybe even accusing you of being the problem, don’t take it personal, it’s really not you that’s pushing this, it’s the mental health disorder,” said Brannen, the executive director of Recovery in Motion.

Although the conversation may be hard for both you and your loved one, let them know you want to help, whatever that may look like for them.

“Ask them what they think the solution to the situation is, and then see if you can provide answers for some resources they can go to,” said Brannen.

For Nick Mathews, he works to share his journey with recovery because he understands how isolating it can feel. He says, when he was at his lowest point, his family handled it well.

“It got to the point where the only thing they ever told me was we love you, we care about you, we want you to get better, and if you ever need us to get better, we will help,” said Mathews.

Recovery in Motion can be found here.

The Crisis Center can be found here.

Stillwater Behavioral Health can be found here.

The Walker Center can be found here.

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