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Learn to cope with stress this National Stress Awareness Day

Learn to cope with stress this National Stress Awareness Day

illustration of stressed woman

The past year has brought a host of new stressors into our lives that most of us could have never anticipated. Many have not been able to see or hug their loved ones in over a year. Some have lost work and are struggling with rent, bills, and looming debt. Countless parents have juggled caring for their children while working. To top it all off, we’re coming out of a long, isolated winter fraught with COVID-19 case surges.

It’s completely normal to be stressed in these circumstances. You are not alone if you feel sad, overwhelmed, and weary. Increases in vaccine distribution represent a light at the end of the tunnel, but we still have a ways to go before resuming normal life.

It’s important to lower our stress as much as possible because it can wreak havoc on our bodies and cause a whole host of issues--from increased risk of heart attack to a higher chance of suffering depression. 

Today is National Stress Awareness Day. Given current circumstances, the majority of us are quite familiar with stress--which is why we’re offering some tips and resources to help you destress.

  • Make time in your day to get outside and exercise. Any form of exercise--whether it’s yoga, a bike ride, or a walk--can help boost your serotonin levels, which improve your mood and well-being.
  • Take a break from reading, watching, or listening to news stories, and consider taking a break from social media too. Instead, consider limiting your news consumption to just a few times per day, and think about how you can disconnect from screens, even if it’s just for a half-hour.
  • Connect with others through phone calls, video chats, or in a safe and socially distanced way outside. Supporting others, and receiving support from your loved ones can decrease your stress levels.
  • Take time to unwind. This can look different for everyone but journaling, reading, and meditating are good activities to consider.

If you are struggling to cope with stress, there are plenty of resources designed to help you. Health Share members are eligible for all mental health and substance use benefits covered by the Oregon Health Plan (OHP), at no cost.

Your benefits include:

  • Counseling/therapy
  • Residential treatment
  • Detox
  • And more

Health Share’s mental health and substance use provider network is managed by CareOregon. 

To get care and services:

Need urgent mental health support?

Call your county’s mental health crisis line 24/7. 

Clackamas County

Multnomah County

Washington County

Or, you can visit the following locations for urgent mental health treatment:

Unity Center for Behavioral Health – Psychiatric Emergency Service
Open 24/7
1225 NE 2nd Ave
Portland, OR 97232

Cascadia Urgent Mental health Walk-in Center (Multnomah County)
Open 7 days a week from 7 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.
4212 SE Division, Suite 100
Portland, OR 97206

Clackamas County Urgent Mental Health Walk-in Clinic
Open M-F 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Weekends 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
11211 SE 82nd Ave., Suite O
Happy Valley, OR 97086

Hawthorn Walk-in Center (Washington County)
Open 7 days a week from 9 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.
5240 NE Elam Young Pkwy
Hillsboro, OR 97124