Local experts share the latest information and resources on all things mental health.
Posted: July 31, 2016 by Sam Wilson
After a few false starts and several cloudy stumbles, the glory of summer is here again in the Pacific Northwest. The truth is that summer is a great time to find a therapist in Oregon's cool maritime climate...therapy can seem like almost a seasonal profession when three months of endless, perfect days gives way to nine more of gloom and drizzle. I can almost guarantee that the perfect therapist you found online last January who was barely taking calls probably has a few open spots this July. Why not give them a try between camping trips?
Believe it or not, even Oregon summer can be a very difficult time for some people. If you are having body image issues, summer can be a stressful and insecure time. Having children home from school can make it difficult for introverts to find time alone for self-care. Summer means graduation for many and facing the challenges of a difficult job market. And these days Facebook and Instagram make it all too easy to suffer from FOMO ("fear of missing out"), the false belief that everyone in the world but you is currently cresting a mountain or tanning on a private beach.
Long, bright days can worsen insomnia, especially for people working unusual shifts. For those suffering from Bipolar Disorder, this can trigger a manic episode. Frequent late night parties can lead to excessive drinking or drug use, even leading some people with addictions to relapse. But more importantly, summer is a time like any other when life still happens, a time when difficult decisions are made and losses occur. But often we feel so over-scheduled and inundated with making plans and pleasing others that we neglect ourselves and our own needs in important ways.
Help is out there. Whatever you are going through, there is a counselor who understands and can offer some comfort and assistance. Pick up the phone or send an email and start the process of figuring out how to overcome your barriers. It won't take long. There will be plenty of time for kayaking this evening.