COVID-19: Mental health aid bookings have filled in the Houston area since the start of the pandemic

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – Another year is approaching where so far things haven’t quite returned to “normal,” and Houston-area mental health experts say the stress of life is normal, in addition to the pandemic, is taking a toll on a lot of people.

Since the start of the pandemic, mental health experts have said they have seen a significant increase in the demand for appointments.

“We’re fully booked right now. We’re looking to hire someone new to try and keep pace,” said Ty Lerman, psychotherapist at Southwest Psychotherapy Associates.

Lerman has said without a doubt that the stress of the pandemic has led more and more people to seek help.

SEE RELATED: Where to Find Help and Resources in the Greater Houston Area

“Certainly depression and anxiety have set in. Lots of people have lost loved ones, so grieving is a big problem,” Lerman said.

Dr Beatriz Craven, psychologist and owner of Modern Therapy, said they have also remained reserved since the virus struck.

“The amount of adjustments we’ve made is unprecedented. It’s something we’ve never experienced before, so demand has really exploded,” Craven said.

Lerman said the pandemic has also taken its toll on our relationships.

“The biggest increase has been linked to the need for couples counseling. So much so that in our practice we are looking to hire a new person specifically to deal with couples and relationship counseling, ”Lerman said.

Lerman said spending more time together at home is one of the many factors driving increased demand.

“Being forced to be at home 24/7 with our partners has taken away the ability or adaptability to sweep things under the rug and pretend things aren’t a problem,” he said. Lerman said.

While there may be a waiting list, experts are encouraging people to make their mental health a priority.

“Now is the time. Don’t wait. Don’t let it continue to pile up. Do what you can to take care of your sanity. This is important,” Craven said.

For more information on mental health resources available in the Houston area, click here.

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