Camden, N.J. – As the holiday season is underway during a global pandemic, the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office is highlighting resources and tips for those who might be struggling with depression.

“Seasonal Affective Disorder can affect anyone as we head into a winter season with shorter days and colder temperatures, but this year is made even more difficult due to a lack of social interaction, more solitary holiday celebrations and uncertainty surrounding the pandemic,” said Acting Camden County Prosecutor Jill S. Mayer. “Even those who have never dealt with depression or anxiety might find themselves struggling this season, and I want everyone to know there are still resources out there and it’s okay to ask for help.”

Excessive drowsiness, feelings of hopelessness, difficulty concentrating, and increased appetite are all signs of SAD, according to University Hospitals. These feelings are also more likely to occur during the holidays, especially in 2020.

To combat these feelings , work to stay connected with friends and family through calls, texts, or video chats, maintain a sense of daily routine even if you’re working from home, and exercise regularly – even when you don’t want to do so.

If you’re doing these things and are still having trouble maintaining daily tasks, mental health experts say it’s time to reach out for help.

Despite the pandemic, there are local and national resources available for those who need it:

  • NJ Mental Health Cares hotline
    • 1-866-202-HELP (4357)
    • 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week
    • Email help@njmentalhealthcares.org
  • NJ Department of Human Services’ Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services
    • Division of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing videophone helpline
      • 973-870-0677
      • Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • New Jersey Hopeline
    • National Alliance on Mental Illness NJ
      • Disaster Mental Health Helpline
      • National Suicide Prevention Hotline
        • 1-800-273-8255

If you are in immediate danger and need help, please call 911.