Feeling anxious about the new restrictions? Here's some services that might be of use 1 week ago

Feeling anxious about the new restrictions? Here's some services that might be of use

Always remember to reach out - and to put yourself first.

It's been a strange and uncertain year, and it looks like it's only about to get more so.

Last night, the Cabinet agreed to ban all household visits (apart from those necessary for childcare purposes or on compassionate grounds) from tonight in a bid to curb the spread of Covid.

Donegal, Cavan, and Monaghan will also move to Level 4 restrictions from midnight tonight, leading to the further closure of all non-essential businesses.

The second wave is here, and it's come during a time when the days are rapidly shortening and the weather is poor.

Those among us who already suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder in the winter months may be feeling it a lot more than usual, while people living with depression and anxiety could be experiencing the stresses of a second imminent lockdown far more intensely.

News such as last night's can be upsetting, triggering, and difficult to process. And while it's important to recognise your feelings and know that it's okay not to feel okay, it's also crucial to be aware of the resources available to those who might be struggling.

Samaritans: 116 123 (24 hours), or download the self help app to keep track of your moods and manage your anxieties

Aware: 1800 80 48 48 (10am - 10pm), or email supportmail@aware.ie for a response within 24 hours

Pieta House: 1800 247 247 (24 hours), or text HELP to 51444

Women's Aid: 1800 341 900 (24 hours)

Dublin Rape Crisis Centre: 1800 77 8888 (24 hours)

LGBT Ireland: 1890 929 539 (all timings can be found here)

Transgender Support Line: 01 907 3707 (all timings can be found here)

Turn2Me: Text HELLO to 50800 for immediate support (24 hours)

My Mind: See if you are eligible for free online counselling during Covid

As always, if you are feeling in need of support, it's always a good idea to chat to someone - a mental health professional, a family member, or a friend.

Similarly, social media can be a place of support during times of need, but it can also be a space for negativity, criticism, and pain to fester.

Where possible, take a break from scrolling. Get your news from reputable sources, process it, and move on. While it can often be tempting to engulf yourself in bad news on your Twitter or Facebook timeline, it's important to take a step back - especially if the constant onslaught of information and emotion is making you feel worse.

Always remember to reach out, when you need to - and to put yourself first.

These times may be uncertain and difficult to navigate, but your feelings and anxieties are just as important as the next person's. If you're struggling, look after yourself. Your own health is paramount and needs to be protected.

If you have been affected by this story, you can contact any of the services above or Samaritans on 116 123.