Reminder about state services available to cope with holiday depression

During this holiday season, marked by many as a time of joy and excitement, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, in a press release, reminded residents that 2-1-1 is available to help during the holidays to assist with referrals for services for symptoms of depression and anxiety.

 “We want to remind Connecticut residents that there are resources and help available if they are experiencing symptoms of depression and anxiety during this holiday season,” Malloy said in the press release from h is office.  “Residents can dial 2-1-1 at any time and speak to trained staff for assistance and referrals.  Help and the comfort of knowing you are not alone are available to any Connecticut resident who needs it.”

“It is critical that people know where to turn if they need help during the holidays – and year round,” Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman said in the governor’s press release.  “When mental health care becomes part of the overall health care landscape, seeking treatment becomes easier.  It’s why we must continue our efforts to strengthen the mental health supports that are out there, and better connect them to our overall health care system.”

Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Commissioner Pat Rehmer saidin the release, “For those that have suffered a loss, the holidays may be very difficult.  Perhaps they serve as a reminder of how holiday traditions can be forever changed.  Help may be needed to manage persistent feelings of hopelessness, sadness or anxiety combined with symptoms such as the inability to sleep, face routine chores and irritability.“

2-1-1 can be dialed from anywhere in Connecticut.  Each call is answered by a highly-trained call specialist who can assess needs and provide referrals to community resources.  Every day, call specialists help find assistance for complex issues such as financial problems, substance abuse and suicide prevention and for simpler issues such as finding volunteer opportunities and donation options.  2-1-1 is available 24-hours a day, every day of the year.  Multilingual assistance and TDD access is also available.

Most people have felt sad or depressed at times, said the release.  Feeling depressed can be a normal reaction to loss and life’s struggles.  Feelings of intense sadness, including feeling helpless, hopeless, and worthless, that last longer than a few weeks and interfere with functioning normally may be depression, something more than sadness.  There are various treatments that are effective at relieving symptoms of depression.

 In Connecticut, the release said, a wide range of services for treating behavioral health disorders, such as depression, is available.  Effective care can include inpatient and outpatient services, peer support, medication management, and crisis intervention programs, all available within local communities.