Rising demand for therapy during holiday season in the Okanagan, expert says

Click to play video: 'Rising pressure during the holiday season'
Rising pressure during the holiday season
Christmas is only ten days away which means people are starting to feel the rising pressure of the holiday season. As Jasmine King explains, this is also a factor in the rising demand for therapy across the Okanagan – Dec 15, 2022

Christmas is only 10 days away, which means people are starting to feel the rising pressure of the holiday season. This is also a factor in the rising demand for therapy across the Okanagan.

Many people seek professional help and someone to talk to during this busy season. However, it’s not an easy time for a new client to connect with a therapist.

“We see very high demand, there’s long waitlists for all of our clinicians. We hear from our clients too that it’s very difficult to access psychologists in the community,” said Dr. Delaine Shackleton with the Kelowna Psychologists Group.

Dr. Shackleton says it’s especially difficult for people in remote communities to access care.

“We see a lot of people reaching out to us, saying that they have one, two-year waitlists or they can’t access anybody at all. Sometimes they don’t have any support, they might be socially isolated, they might be having challenges and they really have nobody to reach out to,” said Dr. Shackleton.

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Click to play video: 'Stresses during the holiday season'
Stresses during the holiday season

Dr. Shackleton says this time of year brings many challenges but one is especially prevalent.

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“The holidays bring a lot of stress financially and with families in those different dynamics. But I would say that, overall, because of the shift that we’ve seen in terms of like the cost of living really increasing and wages not increasing, there’s a ton of financial pressure,” she said.

Holiday shoppers Global News spoke to in the Okanagan can relate.

“There’s always things someone wants or especially with the kids, they have certain desires that you might not want to fulfill like video gaming and things like that, that corrupt their minds maybe,” one shopper said.

“There’s a lot to do at work at the end of the year and then all the getting organized for Christmas, but thankfully I have a beautiful wife at home that works really hard,” said another.

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In order to alleviate the pressure felt during the holidays, Dr. Shackleton has a few recommendations.

“Definitely not isolating, even when you feel like you want to isolate, that’s when you should be reaching out to those friends and seeking the support that you need. Trying to find a provider who can give you services as well and maybe get some extra vitamin D,” she said.

Dr. Shackleton also reminds people to carry out their daily practices during this busy season.

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