The pandemic has overwhelmingly affected the mental health of many Americans, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
This is true even more so for children who were isolated from their peers during remote learning.
Studies from the CDC show that over a third of high school students in the United States reported experiencing poor mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additional stressors such as inflation and housing insecurity have fueled the issue for lower income communities.
The Metro Council of Community Behavioral Health Centers represents the public mental health system in the Kansas City area.
The council is comprised of nine local behavioral health providers who offer help to the uninsured as well as medicare and medicaid recipients. Treatments for serious mental health illnesses are between 70-90% effective at reducing symptoms and improving quality of life, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Mental Health America says those coping with mental health illness can preserve and strengthen their mental health through connecting with others, staying physically active, getting enough sleep, eating well, creating opportunities for joy and satisfaction in life and seeking professional help.
Those in need of mental health assistance in Missouri can call the Missouri Crisis Line at 1-888-279-8188.
In Kansas, the Johnson County Crisis Line is available 24 hours a day at 913-268-0156 and the Wyandotte County line can be called available at 913-788-4200.