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The National Council on Substance Abuse (NCSA) is encouraging residents across Barbados to find creative ways to relax during the period of national pause without the use of drugs.

In a statement issued by the department, persons encountering challenges in dealing with the present circumstances are being encouraged to seek professional help.

Persons requiring counselling support during the “national pause”, which ends on Wednesday, February 17, may call the NCSA at 239-0584 or 230-1250.

However, it advised that those who did not wish to seek help can pursue other avenues to reduce stress, and relax and unwind without substance use.

These alternatives include exercising indoors, in the backyard, or in front of the house.  “Exercise has been proven to release endorphins into the brain creating natural happy feelings within a person,” the statement said.

In addition, meditation and reading a book, or listening to the audio version, were also identified as approaches persons could use to relax.

The NCSA further noted that taking long baths by soaking in a tub, having a candle-lit bath, and using oils or bathing salts while listening to music, could also help persons to relax.

“Listen to your old CDs, cassette tapes, your iPod or you can listen to music from your mobile phones.  There is also free music online or you can create your own music,” the department advised.

Persons were also encouraged to get creative by getting involved in arts and craft and building things from wood.

The NCSA is also encouraging the public to continue observing the COVID-19 protocols during this time and to remain safe.

It also advised persons to call 234-7115 for accounting queries, and 239-0608 or 233-0561 for administration or general assistance during this time.

National Council on Substance Abuse

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