Posted: Tuesday, November 1, 2022. 4:02 am CST.
By Benjamin Flowers: The Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) is urging Belizeans to take necessary steps to safeguard their mental health as the country prepares to weather Tropical Storm Lisa, which is expected to arrive as a Category 1 Hurricane on Wednesday.
The MOHW issued a release acknowledging that there may be a wide range of emotions that a person goes through before a disaster, and that the issuance of a warning or mandatory evacuations may increase emotional stress levels.
The Ministry encouraged Belizeans to utilize a variety of safe coping mechanisms, including having a plan and implementing it if necessary, ensuring that all necessary supplies such as food, water, and medication are stocked up; storing important documents and photos in a safe place. Identify a shelter where you plan to go if you need to evacuate; keep a routine and focus on what can be controlled as opposed to things that cannot.
“Try to eat, sleep and exercise regularly and on a schedule. Schedule other activities for days in advance so you can look forward to them,” the Ministry said.
The MOHW also suggested that Belizeans limit the consumption of news and listen only to reliable reports. Set a time when they will update themselves on what is shared for them to make an appropriate decision. Belizeans were also urged to get enough good sleep. Try to sleep when you are sleepy. Avoid using your cell phone or other devices in bed and try not to drink caffeine or alcohol around your regular bedtime, among a number of other recommendations.
Those needing to speak with a mental health professional can do so by calling the relevant number from the list below:
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