As our community faces the challenges caused by COVID-19 by preparing our homes, finding online lessons for our children and working remotely, we can’t forget to take care of our mental health. Everyone reacts differently during stressful situations but when a situation requires social distancing or quarantine, feelings and thoughts are intensified. Many find themselves isolated, scared and worried. With these new stressors and feelings of despair, one may turn to alcohol or drugs to help cope. The Bay Area Council on Drugs and Alcohol would like to encourage everyone to help support themselves and others. The following are helpful resources to use while in isolation: 

Substance Abuse & Mental Health Service Administration’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders. 1-800-622-HELP (4357) 

The Disaster Distress Helpline is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year, national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common reactions after a disaster. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor. 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones. 1-800-273-8255 

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) Available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., this organization provides free information and referrals to treatment programs, support groups, and educational programs. 

Boys Town National Hotline: 1-800-448-3000. Both children and parents can call this hotline 24/7 for free crisis intervention services, plus information and referrals to valuable mental health resources. Email, text, and online chat-based services are also available. 

Teen Line: 1-310-855-HOPE (4673) or 1-800-TLC-TEEN (852-8336) Offers teen-to-teen counseling services available between 4 and 8 p.m. The service is also available by texting “TEEN” to 839863. 

Stay informed about drug and alcohol facts and events in your community by following Bay Area Council on Drugs and Alcohol @BACODA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or visit

Kelly Miller 

Bay Area Council on Drugs and Alcohol


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