Health & Wellness

Press Releases

Caring Contact offers tips for reducing stress for Stress Awareness Month

Stuff happens. How you handle it can impact your health.

April is National Stress Awareness month and nonprofit Caring Contact is sharing tips for avoiding and reducing stress. Caring Contact is an award-winning, volunteer-staffed caring and crisis hotline and listening community, providing active listening support and best-in-class training to Central and Northern New Jersey. More than 100 trained volunteer listeners answer nearly 9,000 calls each year from people in crisis, having suicidal thoughts or simply feeling depressed, lonely or stressed.

"Experts tell us that some amount of stress in life is unavoidable," said Janet Sarkos, Caring Contact's executive director. "Stress is a natural response to danger and enables us to respond accordingly, such as swerving a car to avoid an accident.

Sign Up for E-News

"But unfortunately, everyday events, such as conflicts at work, financial concerns or anxiety over a personal matter also can trigger stress. And if this kind of stress becomes persistent, it can lead to significant health problems, including depression."

According to the Federal Occupational Health (FOH) agency, long-term stress can lead to a wide range of illnesses – from headaches to stomach concerns and depression – and can even increase the risk of serious conditions such as stroke and heart disease. Stress also causes other hormones to activate that can suppress functions such as digestion and the immune system, leaving people more susceptible to illness.

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America offers these tips for dealing with and reducing stress:

  • Take a time-out. Practice yoga, meditate, get a massage or learn relaxation techniques.
  • Eat well-balanced meals and do not skip any meals. Keep healthful, energy-boosting snacks on hand.
  • Limit alcohol and caffeine, which can aggravate anxiety and trigger panic attacks.
  • Do your best. Instead of aiming for perfection, be proud of however close you get.
  • Welcome humor. A good laugh goes a long way.
  • Get involved. Volunteer or find another way to be active in your community, which creates a support network and gives you a break from everyday stress.
  • Learn what triggers your anxiety. Is it work, family, school or something else you can identify? Write in a journal when you’re feeling stressed or anxious and look for a pattern.
  • Talk to someone. Tell friends and family you’re feeling overwhelmed and let them know how they can help you. Talk to a physician or therapist for professional help or call Caring Contact.

Caring Contact listeners are available for people experiencing stress and/or depression. Calls are nonjudgmental and listeners provide an empathetic ear while helping callers find a solution to their concerns. Call 908.232.2880.

Callers to the hotline have made these comments to Caring Contact listeners:

  • "As I tell you stuff, the pain in my body lessens."
  • "People don't know how to be there and listen. Thank you for listening and letting me talk things out."
  • “Thank you so much for listening to me…I feel good when I call here and I talk to someone.”

Caring Contact serves Central and Northern New Jersey and is a primary responder to calls to the national suicide prevention line (1-800-273-TALK or 1-800-SUICIDE) that originate in New Jersey. Callers also reach Caring Contact by dialing 908-232-2880. Those preferring to seek supporting through texting may text “heart” to 741-741. The hotline also provides best-in-class training to the Central and Northern New Jersey Community. To learn more,


Anyone interested in volunteering at Caring Contact, either as a listener or in some other capacity, should visit

About Caring Contact

Caring Contact is an award-winning, volunteer-staffed caring and crisis hotline providing active listening support and best-in-class education to the Central and Northern New Jersey community. We attentively and compassionately serve those in emotional distress and educate our communities about the power of personal connection. We are affiliated with CONTACT USA, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the American Association of Suicidology. If you are in crisis and need someone to listen, call us at 908-232-2880.To learn more, visit




TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

North Plainfield/Green Brook/Watchung

Pre-Ticket Sale for Holy Savior Academy’s 4th Annual Spring Splendor Tricky Tray

Holy Savior Academy is hosting its Spring Splendor Tricky Tray Saturday, April 21, 2018 at the school.  Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Tickets are limited and will be sold at Holy Savior Academy, 149 South Plainfield Avenue, South Plainfield on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (cash or checks)

BYOB and food- Admission $ 25 per ...

The Perfect Travel Pack - The Airport Repack Because of a Delayed Flight - What You Really Need

March 21, 2018

If you have traveled a lot, you have had a canceled flight.  Do you know how to do an airport in such cases?

Well, on a recent canceled flight on Norwegian Air from Berlin to New York, we had to do it.  Our experience is now your gain.

The slide show above shows you step by step, how it was accomplished.  Here we will explain it.

For starters, think about your ...

Air Travel Alert - 1,810 Area Flights Canceled for Wednesday - Check Here For Survival Tips in this Fourth Nor’easter

Whenever there is inclement weather, it pays to keep informed. Wednesday, March 21, 780 flights from Newark and 440 from JFK are already canceled.  LaGuardia canceled 590.  In other words, you are probably snowed in today.

Most Airlines now offer APP, text, or email updates to flight delays.  Make sure to sign up for them.  That will ...

Will Your Air Travels Be Impacted by Our Fourth Nor’easter (Fourth? Is it the End?)

After three Nor’easters, you would think we could catch a break. They do say the fourth one is always the best.  This time, we should be very well practiced.

By now, you know the drill. This article has advice on local and airline support services. You may want to bookmark the page for future reference. 

Most Airlines now offer APP, text, or email updates to flight ...

Local Travel Ideas for St. Patrick’s Day - Calm Family Events to Drinking Shots from...Nevermind

St. Patrick’s Day is coming upon us even faster than St. Patrick chased the snakes out of Ireland.  Here are some of the areas great events to celebrate Irish pride.

March 17 Events

Hoboken - The Nerds at Willie McBride’s (see poster up in the slide show)

Newton - Sober St. Patrick’s Day Gathering

Newton (parade) - Sussex County St. Patrick's Day ...

After a Couple Painful Travel Days the New York City Area Airports Are Returning to Normal

After a couple of difficult travel days, the local airports are returning to normal.  The FAA is reportin only 10 to 15 minute delays.  Allow extra times for the commute to the airport and you should be fine.

Just keep these ideas and links fresh in mind for future travels.  You may even want to bookmark the page for future reference.

Most Airlines now offer ...

Air Travel Disruptions - Newark and Laguardia Airports Are Reporting Delays of 1 to 2 Hours.

The weather continues to play havoc on local air travel.  Newark is reporting average delays of 1 hour 41 minutes and LaGuardia is experiencing 59 minute delays.

Most Airlines now offer APP, text, or email updates to flight delays.  Make sure to sign up for them.  That will be your fastest way to get notifications. Also, make sure to ...

St. Patrick’s Day Sobriety Check in Belmar/Neptune Area on Tap by State Police

March 17, 2018

BELMAR, NJ — Giving no details on location and time, New Jersey State Police plans to conduct a sobriety checkpoint on Saturday, March 17 in the area of Belmar and Neptune Township,

The state police made the announcement on its Facebook page, alerting motorists that state troopers will be pulling over vehicles at this undisclosed location and time  “looking for signs of ...


South Plainfield - Joseph G. Zekas, 90, passed away on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at The Willows at ...
Read more

Upcoming Events


Wed, March 21, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

Holy Savior Academy's 4th Annual Spring Splendor ...


Fri, March 23, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Fri, March 30, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Fri, April 6, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Sat, April 14, 7:00 PM


Support Watchung Hills Project Graduation: SIP ...

Sat, June 2, 9:00 AM

South Plainfield

Holy Savior Academy 5K and Family Fun Walk

Health & Wellness

Tue, June 12, 7:00 PM

FairBridge Hotel and Conference Center, Somerset

SPHS Class of 1968 50the Reunion


AAA Cautions: Daylight Saving Could Affect Daily Commute

March 10, 2018

WARREN, NJ - AAA is reminding drivers that the change to Daylight Saving Time may create distractions on the roadway and challenges for drivers who lost an hour of sleep. Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday at 2 a.m.

“As we spring forward, drivers should be aware that the time change will also mean changes to driving habits,” said Robert Sinclair, Manager of Media ...

School Bus Driver Charged with Sex Assaults Against Students

March 20, 2018

MONTGOMERY, NJ – An 84-year-old township resident has been arrested and charged with sexual assault against an 8-and 12-year-old and as many as seven other children while a bus driver going back to the 1960s, according to Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson.

Edward Atoeff of Cherry Valley Road was the owner and operator of Jastyke Transportation at the time of the alleged ...

Whole Foods Delays Opening Due to Predicted Storm

BRIDGEWATER, NJ — Whole Foods, in the new Chimney Rock Plaza in Bridgewater, is officially opening its doors on Friday, March 23.

It was originally scheduled to open March 21, but the opening was delayed because of the predicted nor'easter.

The Bridgewater location is the first Whole Foods in Somerset County. 

The 49,000-square-foot store is featuring ...