Coping with Stress

These are trying times in America.

  • Unemployment is at an all time high, families are stressed and overburdened with trying to meet their survival needs; they are worried about losing their job or may have already lost their job and have been unable to find another.
  • They are concerned that they cannot make their payments for their home, their car and their other needs.
  • Parents are struggling to provide for their children and are worried about how they will purchase school items, clothing and food.
  • Older adults are scared that they will not be able to purchase the many medications they need for their medical problems so many go without food and other necessities.
  • Many people have put themselves in a situation where they have overextended their finances- homes are in foreclosure and people have to move in with family and friends in order to keep a roof over their head.
  • They become angry; they yell at their family members, they may even physically abuse their family members. They need help.
  • Many children are thought to be behavior problems but may have serious mental health issues that need to be assessed

This is happening in all walks of life- not just those that you typically associate with being unfortunate. These everyday stressors are having a compound effect on people's ability to function. They are depressed, they are anxious and they are scared.

For many, they may know they need help from counseling and may even want to get help....but, are embarrassed. Some don't want to admit to having problems, losing control, and are concerned that others will think less of them because of it. This further compounds their emotional and behavioral issues.

However, for physical problems they are more likely to seek help and to be encouraged by their family and friends to do so. This double standard is detrimental to the well being of people. Physical and mental health issues need to be treated with the same concern by the individual seeking treatment and by others. There is equity in all human discomforts and solutions need to focus on the whole person, both mind and body. It is truly a sign of strength to be willing to open yourself up and seek help for your emotional, mental and behavioral issues.

This is illustrated below in the words of a counselor who was serving a child brought in for services. The counselor realized the far-reaching benefits to others as a result of the treatment the child received.

A 6 year old boy was brought in for counseling by his father, who is a pastor, after being referred by family members and teachers because the child was being disruptive and overly active with a poor attention span in school. Dad believed that praying and having a good family structure would be enough and that the child didn't need mental health counseling because they had always heard that counseling was for "crazy" people. Mom wondered why her son continued to misbehave when he had all the love and attention they could give. After praying for many years with no change, the parents were told by their pediatrician that the child needed mental health services or he'd continue with the same or worse behavior as he got older. In desperation the parents brought the child in for treatment. He was assessed and diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), received counseling and was prescribed medication. Mom now reports that they have seen a huge improvement in their son and they have a better understanding of his issues.

The father continues counseling services for himself and now understands that the "stigmas" are not real and that counseling helps. The parents realize how much counseling and psychiatric services have helped them and are talking to their congregation about our services. They want others to know that it's not a "stigma" and counseling can help families cope.

At Winter Haven Hospital we offer compassionate mental health care and treatment from professionals that you can trust. You can receive the services that you need to help you cope with your concerns. Your family is encouraged to participate and support you. We offer outpatient counseling, psychiatric evaluations and support services through our Center for Behavioral Health which is located at 1201 First Street South in Winter Haven. You can call 863-294-7062 for an appointment and usually be seen that day or the next day.

Most insurance plans, including Medicaid, Medicare and TriCare, are accepted. Services are also offered to those that do not have insurance coverage through the STAR (Supportive Treatment for Active Recovery) Program also located in our facility.

If you are in need of emergency services and are considering harming yourself or others, then you should come to the Winter Haven Hospital Emergency Department where you can see a counselor and be assessed to determine if you need inpatient hospitalization. Our Center for Psychiatry provides intensive treatment from a multi-disciplinary team of professionals who design a discharge plan for you to assist you in the community when you leave.

Outpatient Counseling Services:
Winter Haven Hospital, Inc.
Center for Behavioral Health
(863) 294-7062

Crisis and Inpatient Services:
Winter Haven Hospital, Inc.
Center for Psychiatry
Access Line Available 24/7
(800) 723-3248