Rabbi Benyamin Bresinger
A tsunami is coming - and we are preparing to meet it
When this pandemic is over, the world will be facing another crisis: a flood of mental health and addiction issues that were exacerbated by the isolation and sudden reliance on screens.
William Wagner penned a term for what is coming: a "Post-COVID Addiction-Care Tsunami."
The pandemic shuttered everyone in their homes. Alone, addicts were forced to face their addiction and how it affects their families.
For some, that led to a window of opportunity during which they reached out for help. Chabad Lifeline was ready, and our immediate pivot to Zoom helped many, many families.
Others turned to their screens. After all, everything went online. According to a study by BMC Public Health, "individuals with higher screen time had significantly elevated risks of depression, making them more at risk for substance abuse disorders."
Over the last year, over 81,000 suicide deaths were reported by the CDC. "Addiction is the disease of isolation, and what have we been doing? Isolating," stressed the Chief Medical Officer of the Gateway Foundation.
Our staff has already begun training for the coming tsunami. We have also seen a significant increase in people reaching out for help with screen dependency and porn addiction.
When the tsunami comes, we will be ready.