TW: Suicide and mental health
Today, we want to take a moment to recognize that it is suicide awareness month. We understand that mental health is important to all communities and can also contribute to the health and safety of your home. As we focus on veterans as a main population we serve here at Rebuilding Together, we want to raise awareness and provide resources to those who may need them. The mental health of veterans has statistically been a growing problem in this country.
The National Council for Behavioral Health shows some shocking statistics on their website stating that 30 percent of active duty and reserve military personnel deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan have a mental health condition requiring treatment yet less than 50% of those people get the treatment they need. The Veterans Administration reports that approximately 22 veterans die by suicide every day. While these statistics are concerning, it is important to stay informed. Mental health affects all of our lives whether it’s personally or you know someone who’s struggled with mental health and these resources may be able to help you.
Listed here is a resource to those struggling with thoughts of suicide or who need immediate help. For the National Suicide Prevention Line call 1-800-273-8255. To get to the Veterans Crisis Line dial and Press 1 or text to 838255.
We recognize that a huge contributor to mental health is your surroundings which can include your home. Especially in times like today with COVID when people are spending a lot more time inside their home, there is a greater need to make sure it is a safe and healthy living environment physically and mentally.
If you are not taking steps to take care of both your mental and physical health, it can be detrimental. While staying at home is helping you to stay safe, it is important to understand how to keep your home safe. Rebuilding Together has 7 principles of safe and healthy housing that are a part of every project we do, and could be something for you and your household to keep in mind while you’re spending so much more time at home. Attached you’ll find those seven principles on a printable postcard, you can check in monthly to see if your household is ensuring that these seven principles are being addressed. While taking care of your physical home is important, it is also important to take care of your mental health. These contribute to one another, having a healthy home gives a safe environment to pay attention to mental health, and proper mental health care helps to provide a stable household practices, like taking care of your home. Here are some best practices for mental health that our staff have taken on during these times!
Practicing mindfulness: This can look like a lot of different things, something that you could try is downloading Headspace, an app that helps you to connect with yourself and meditate wherever you may be! This can help to ground you and stop negative thoughts before they become detrimental to your day to day mental health.
Taking time to be outdoors when you can: This could be a short walk around your neighborhood, or going to a park. Taking a break from work or being in the same place for too long can help you to distance yourself from day to day anxieties!
Practice drawing boundaries with yourself and your work/household: Sometimes when you have to stay home for too long, it can feel like everything blends together and the responsibilities never end. Take some time to draw boundaries, set certain times for work, household chores, and taking care of yourself.
Be kind to yourself, you deserve it! It can be challenging to prioritize your mental health in times like these, but it can help you to better take care of your household and home, as well as prevent future problems.