Advice & Tips for Coping with Anxiety around COVID-19

Stay connected with others

Although introverts are relishing this time away from school, the extroverts or social butterflies might struggle. It is important for people to not completely isolate themselves from the world because this could increase their anxiety. Reach out to your friends via Facetime, Skype or Google Hangout. In those "face-to-face" conversations, you may discover that those feelings you're dealing with are exactly what your buddy is also trying to understand. Reach out to others as often as you need. (For a list of resources, follow the Counselling page)

Create new routines

Change can be hard not only physically but mentally. It's important that we try to keep some structure in our lives as we navigate through this school year. There's already so much unpredictability happening in the world right now, so why not create a day that has a schedule, including task lists and daily goals. 


Teenagers try not to sleep in until noon every day! Get that routine going and keep your body healthy with a regular sleep schedule, nutritious meals (including breakfast) and exercise. Studies have proven that exercise is a major benefit to mental health. Schedule in 5 or 10 minutes of walking per day. Grab your music and your dog and enjoy the fresh air.

See this link for more self-care ideas:

Finding Joy

Finding joy right now might be difficult due to all of the regular sporting and school events being postponed or cancelled. However, if you flip it around, maybe this extra time is something that you've wanted to start writing that novel you planned on doing, or finishing that book collecting dust. Perhaps, you've wanted to spend more time with a family member and you're both home now. Bring out the cards or a board game and enjoy building those bonds. Enjoy the small things, like being able to take a walk in the middle of the day, or not being rushed in the morning for school. 

Cut down on your Social Media

We need to find a healthy balance between being informed and protecting our mental health. If you are constantly checking your Social Media accounts for updates on the COVID-19 virus, your anxiety levels may rise and panic may occur. Designate a time of day to look at this information on Social Media and then spend the rest of day taking care of yourself and finding joy. Remind yourself that you cannot control this by constantly checking online so it's best to limit your social media contact.

What you're feeling is normal

The anxiety you may be experiencing is normal in this circumstance. Anxiety helps keep us safe and being proactive by social distancing, and washing our hands are appropriate behaviours. Otherwise, you should feel confident with carrying on with daily routines such as exercising, eating out or socializing - they will just have to be adapted to this situation.

When to know you need professional help with your stress or anxiety

  • If your worry, anxiety or irritability are persistent and your family or friends comment on your behaviour.
  • If you decide to self-medicate or develop an unhealthy eating habit to deal with your emotions.
  • See this link for more warning signs:


Mental Health Resources

While Palliser sorts out how its counselling staff will connect with students, here are some alternate resources:

Kids Help Phone - 1-800-668-6868

Mental Health Helpline - 1-877-303-2642

Distress & Suicide Prevention Hotline - 1-888-787-2880

Connect Teen Line - 1-800-264-8336

Distress Centre Calgary - 1-403-266-4357

Distress Line of SW AB Lethbridge - 1-888-787-2880

Hope for Wellness Hotline (Indigenous) - 1-855-242-3310

Always There - Mobile App

The Life Line - Mobile App

Online Links:


Counseling Resources for Teens

Vulcan Mental Health Clinician is Heather Shenton at the Vulcan Health Centre 403-485-3356.  All ages.  Free through AHS

High River Teen and Young Adult Clinic                     403-652-1654             

303 9 Ave SW High River        Mental health counseling sessions are offered at this clinic, with a booked appointment.

Tuesday’s 2-6pm Walk-in Clinic.  Provides education, birth control, STI and pregnancy testing, healthy relationships, and drug awareness.

Family Ties Association in Lethbridge can do in person or zoom counselling.  Call the Intake line at 403-320-8888.  They are not free but can provide subsidized counselling for 10 sessions under the CMHA/FCSS prevention funding if it is not major trauma related.

Insight Counselling out of Calgary 403-210-0334 is what Wild Rose Community Connections uses.  There may be subsidized options here as well.  Currently there is one female and 2 male counsellors available. Flora 587-408-4333 , ,

Foothills Counselling out of High River that provides counselling on a sliding scale. If the referral comes from the Greater Foothills Family Centre, the cost of counselling may be covered.  403-603-3549

Barons-Eureka-Warner FCSS has provided a counsellor to residents in the south part of county (Lomond, Champion, Carmangay). 587-370-3728

Vulcan FCSS can cover up to 3 sessions of specialized counselling if a financial need can be demonstrated. 403-485-2192.

Ongoing support at anytime:

  • for 16+. A safe and anonymous online community. A place to get support, take control & feel better Accessible 24/7, moderated by registered mental health practitioners.
  • Kids Help Phone- Call 1-800-668-6868, Text 686868 or online at
  • ConnecTeen Call 403-264-8336, Text 587-333-2724  
  • Distress Centre – Call 403-266-4357 Online chat at