Current as of Oct. 6, 2021
As coronavirus disease 2019 persists, and with uncertainty over what daily life might look like for the foreseeable future, it is important for service providers to be able to access resources to help service members and their families.
This includes having access to information on topics such as managing stress, maintaining mental well-being and staying strong in the face of the pandemic.
Where to Find the Information You Need to Help Others
Resources are available to help service members and their families, leadership and health care providers, including:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides information on the effects of outbreaks and how individuals can cope with fear and anxiety. Topics covered by the CDC include:
- Conditions that can result from outbreaks
- How the effects can vary from person to person
- Ways to manage stress
- How parents can support their children during the outbreak
- How to support loved ones
- Emotions individuals may face when coming out of quarantine
In addition, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration offers a fact sheet that details some common reactions brought on by social distancing and isolation in the wake of a pandemic.
There are also numerous mobile apps available to help individuals maintain good mental health. These include Chill Drills by Military OneSource, a collection of simple audio mindfulness exercises created especially for service members and their families.
Military OneSource provides a variety of information for families coping with the effects of COVID-19, such as:
- How to gain strength from family routines
- How to increase your skills and education from home
- How to make sure you’re staying healthy during quarantine
- Top 10 ways to stay strong during challenging times
The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry provides resources on talking to your children about coronavirus.
There is also no shortage of material available to help leaders during COVID-19, including fact sheets and other resources from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress.
Information available on the site includes:
- Ways to reduce stress for those exposed to mass death, including training for mortuary work
- What roles leaders can play in supporting those who have suffered loss
- Factors related to the business and employee side of the pandemic
Another page from the CSTS outlines what public health leaders should know about the psychological effects of the outbreak.
In addition, the American Psychological Association looks at ways leaders can maximize trust and minimize stress during times of crisis.
The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress also provides information geared toward what health care providers can do for patients during COVID-19.
In addition, the American Psychological Association shows how providers can help patients and the community heal from loss amid the pandemic.
In related research, the APA discusses how psychological research from past crises can help people cope with the daily, and sometimes hourly, newsflashes about the coronavirus.
COVID Coach App a Military Community Resource
The COVID Coach app is a resource that can help everyone in the military community maintain mental health during the pandemic. The app has four categories: “Manage Stress,” “Learn,” “Mood Check” and “Find Resources.”
“Manage Stress” is broken down into subtopics, including:
- Coping with stress
- Feeling lonely
- Feeling sad or hopeless
- Handling anger and irritability
- Navigating relationships
“Learn” offers tools designed to help individuals:
- Stay well
- Stay balanced
- Stay together
- Stay safe
- Stay healthy
“Mood Check” allows users to:
- Set a goal
- Track well-being
- Track anxiety
- Track mood
- Track PTSD symptoms
“Find Resources” allows users to find content providing support in the following areas:
- Crisis and substance abuse
- General counseling
- Financial resources and benefits
- Local COVID-19 benefits
COVID Coach, which is available at no cost to service or family members, also includes guidance on how to get the most out of the app, as well as how to personalize it and manage data. Users can also share the app with people they know.
Stay up to date on all the latest information on COVID-19. For Department of Defense updates for the military community regarding the virus that causes COVID-19, view the following sites: