Pixabay image

Calls to Okanagan crisis line increase for those over 40

Kelowna Community Resources said more middle- and senior-aged residents are calling for help

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, calls to crisis lines continue to climb.

According to Kelowna Community Resources (KCR) crisis line coordinator Michelle Neimes, they haven’t seen a significant increase in call volume between September and October, but the number of calls remains high.

She said there has been a change in the intensity of the calls.

“We are seeing an increased intensity with people self-managing anxiety, isolation, financial and emotional stress,” she said.

In a previous interview, Interior Crisis Line Network (ICLN) program director Asha Croggon said at the start of the pandemic, they saw a 30 per cent increase in call volume, with some weeks reaching a 50 per cent increase.

“We’ve also seen an increase in call intensity, which means people have greater escalations. So definitely, we get more violent calls, more suicide-related calls, and calls related to past sexual trauma and that can be because during a traumatic event such as a global pandemic, it can trigger some of our trauma responses that relate to other experiences in life,” Croggon said.

While there hasn’t been a significant change in call volume, Neimes did confirm that there has been a change in who uses the crisis lines.

“The crisis line is being used by individuals of all ages… but there has been an increase in individuals who are between the ages of 40 and 75.”

Croggon has previously said this is due to the economic uncertainty brought on by pandemic restrictions, as well as isolation due to gathering and visitation restrictions.

Neimes is offering some helpful tips for individuals who may be struggling during this time.

  • Interact safely with others and reach out for phone/online connections; physical distancing doesn’t mean emotional distancing
  • Recognize the stress alarms (increased irritability or sadness, tension in your body, problems remembering or difficulty focusing) and engage in self-care
  • Create a self-care plan (who you’ll connect with, what you’ll do for yourself, where you’ll reach out for more support
  • Call the crisis line to get help working out a self-care plan
  • Be compassionate with yourself and others; be kind to one another and now you are not alone

If you or someone you know is struggling, help is available at 1-888-353-2273.

READ: Increase in calls due to pandemic: Interior Crisis Line Network


Twila Amato
Video journalist, Black Press Okanagan
Email me at twila.amato@blackpress.ca
Follow me on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A medical worker prepares vials of the COVID-19 vaccines, Chinese Sinopharm, left, Sputnik V, center, and Pfizer at a vaccine centre, in the Usce shopping mall in Belgrade, Serbia, Thursday, May 6, 2021. Serbian authorities are looking for incentives for people to boost vaccination that has slowed down in recent weeks amid widespread anti-vaccination and conspiracy theories in the Balkan nation. The government has also promised a payment of around 25 euros to everyone who gets vaccinated by the end of May. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
38 new COVID-19 cases, more than 335k vaccines administered in Interior Health

Interior Health also to start targeted vaccinations in high transmission neighbourhoods

FILE PHOTO
Second doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available, as AstraZeneca supply runs low: Interior Health

Province expecting large volumes of Pfizer BioNTech as age-based cohort immunization program ramps up

An example of one the sounding boards the RDOS has set up to gather feedback for their first parks, trails and recreation master plan. (RDOS)
Looking for feedback from Princeton and Keremeos for park and rec plan

Sounding boards have been set up in both regions for in-person input

Al Kowalko shows off the province's first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
Okanagan schools shifting gears to electric buses

Vernon, Central Okanagan, Rocky Mountain and Okanagan-Skaha on board

The Primary Urgent Care Centre on Martin Street officially opened on March 31, 2021. (Brennan Phillips)
Okanagan-Similkameen Regional Hospital District reverses funding decision on care centre

Approval now granted to fund $1 million for Urgent and Primary Care Centre in Penticton

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start releasing neighbourhood-specific COVID numbers after data leak

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Upgrades will be completed on a portion of the Kettle Valley Railway trail north of Penticton. (Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen photo)
Contract awarded for improvements to trail near Penticton

Portion of Kettle Valley Railway trail will receive upgrades

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count creeps up, seven more deaths

445 people in hospital, 157 in intensive care

Summerland’s positive test rate is much higher than surrounding local health areas, according to internal BC CDC documents. (BC CDC)
Summerland 3rd behind Surrey, Abbotsford in daily per capita COVID-19 cases

Interior Health is rolling out additional vaccine availability to the community

Cops for Kids riders will be spinning 30 feet in the air on scissor lifts at SaveOn Foods locations in Kelowna, Lake Country and West Kelowna Saturday, May 8, 2021. (File photo)
Cops reach new heights for Okanagan kids

Nor-Val Rentals is doing the heavy lifting Saturday in Kelowna, West Kelowna and Lake Country

Interior Health nurses administer Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to seniors and care aids in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Kelowna Capital News file)
People aged 30+ in Summerland, Rutland offered vaccine amid high transmission risk

Interior Health offers residents of Rutland and Summerland aged 30 and up chance at vaccine

Amazon is pausing its Prime Day marketing event in Canada this year amid ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks at its facilities in Ontario. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Amazon Prime Day halted in Canada due to COVID-19 outbreaks in warehouses

The event was postponed to protect the health and safety of employees and customers, the company says

Ally Thomas, 12, seen in an undated family handout photo, died on April 14 from a suspected overdose. Her family says they are frustrated more public supports weren't available when they tried to get her help. THE CANADIAN PRESS
Minister says suspected overdose death of 12-year-old pushing B.C. to ‘do better’

Minister Sheila Malcolmson of Mental Health and Addictions says the government is working ‘as hard as we can’ to build a system of care for youths

Most Read