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Students dealing with added stress from pandemic, experts say

North Carolina ranks 12th in the US for states dealing with mental health struggles.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — In the past few years there’s been plenty of change as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and experts say with that change can come stress and trauma. 

"A lot of people have physically lost family members to death, there’s been lost some sense of safety and innocence that we once had," Victor Armstrong with Recovering Innovations International said.

North Carolina ranks 12th in the US for states dealing with mental health struggles. 

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Now with students back in the classroom families are dealing with the added stress of ensuring safety when it comes to precautions for COVID-19 and school shootings.  

But therapists say these feelings shouldn’t be foreign.

"Everybody handles stress differently and a lot of it is giving yourself the grace to feel that stress and know that it is normal," Armstrong said.

Experts say it's also important to recognize how these emotions can affect you physically, mentally, behaviorally, spiritually and emotionally too. 

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 Some of the best coping advice is communication. 

Really connect as much as you can face to face with people where you have that interaction and connectivity with people," Armstrong said. "Sometimes it's as much as connecting with family and friends that you haven’t talked to in a while so you really feel like you’re not alone with whatever it is you’re going through."

And when it comes to loss and grief, the Mental Health Summit coming to charlotte next weekend is making that its focus to help connect children and families with the resources they need.

Contact Briana Harper at bharper@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

If you or a loved one are facing thoughts of suicide or self-harm, there is help readily available. You can call Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or chat with them online. There are also resources in North Carolina available here and in South Carolina available here.



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