OCHN Shares Mental Health Tips Following Crisis at MSU
(OCHN, Feb. 14, 2023)
Michigan – Oakland Community Health Network (OCHN) is releasing mental health tips for families and individuals to manage stress or trauma associated with the recent crisis at Michigan State University (MSU). Individuals experiencing a mental health crisis should call 988 (24 hours/7days) or Oakland Community Health Network’s non-emergency behavioral health access department at 248.464.6363, Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Tips for Parents:
- Acknowledge what happened. If your child is talking or asking about traumatic events, it is important for the caregivers / loved ones in their life to acknowledge what happened, provide age-appropriate information, and be supportive.
- Parents may want to approach older children who may have seen the news or videos on social media and find out what they know and what their thoughts / feelings are about what happened.
- Recognize the effect this has on your child. Talk to your child about their thoughts and emotions as it pertains to the event and validate their feelings and concerns. With mass shootings in public places and places of worship, this is a valid concern for them, and all adults need to take their viewpoint and concerns into consideration.
- Help your child to feel safe. A sense of normalcy and routine as soon as possible after an event helps to re-establish a child’s sense of safety and structure. Discuss whatever positive aspects can be found in tragic events such as the quick police response and how community members and citizens across the country are coming together to support those affected.
Tips for Adults:
- Everyone experiences events and trauma in different ways and however they think or feel after an event like this is okay. Some people respond with fear, some anger, some shock, sadness, etc. Encourage people to talk about what they are thinking and feeling. Seek support from friends, family, or professionals if necessary.
- Try to get back to routines and schedules to promote feelings of consistency and balance to reduce fear and provide a feeling of returning control and predictability.
- Be mindful to consider the amount of exposure to the news / media, particularly to children. It is okay to keep updated, but continuing to view the images, etc. will worsen and prolong the issues the person is experiencing.
OCHN is contracted by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to lead a provider service network that assists approximately 27,000 Oakland County citizens at more than 300 service sites across the county. People who receive public behavioral health services through OCHN’s provider network include those who have an intellectual or developmental disability, mental health concerns, or substance use disorder. Most of these individuals have Medicaid insurance coverage.
OCHN’s goal is to ensure these individuals are aware of and have access to services and supports that will improve their health and quality of life, as well as ensure their engagement in full community participation. Its mission to “inspire hope, empower people, and strengthen communities” reflects an unyielding belief in a “Valuable System for Valued People.” Programs and supports provided by OCHN’s service network are available at www.oaklandchn.org.