Mental Health During Covid-19

October 21, 2020

The unpredictability and uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic; from unprecedented lockdowns to physical distancing, and other containment strategies; and the resulting economic breakdown have together increased the risk of mental health problems and exacerbated health inequalities. Preliminary findings suggest adverse mental health effects in previously healthy people and especially in people with pre-existing mental health disorders. 

 

A mountain of troubling data shows that mental health problems have risen with the pandemic. While the country continues to battle the coronavirus, health professionals are monitoring a growing crisis among adults struggling with mental health problems, including suicidal ideation, depression, and anxiety related to the pandemic. 

A Mental Health Reminder: You're Not Alone - Article - Community Care Physicians P.C.

Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. The emotional impact of an emergency or quarantine on a person can depend on the person’s characteristics and experiences, the social and economic circumstances of the person and their community and the availability of local resources. Some people can become more distressed if they see repeated images or hear repeated reports about the COVID-19 outbreak in the media.

 

Reactions during an infectious disease outbreak can include:

 

  • Fear and worry about your own health and of your loved ones
  • Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
  • Changes in sleep or eating patterns
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco or other drugs
  • Worsening of chronic health problems

 

Feelings of fear, anxiety, sadness, and uncertainty are normal during a pandemic. If you or your loved ones are reacting in any of the ways listed above, start being proactive about your mental health because it can help to keep both your mind and body stronger. Follow the steps below to avoid stress, depression, and anxiety and be more in control of yourself.

COVID-19 and Mental Health | NCAA.org - The Official Site of the NCAA

Take A Break from News

 

Avoid excessive exposure to media coverage of COVID-19. Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. It can be upsetting to hear about the crisis and see images repeatedly. When you read the news, avoid media outlets that build hype or dwell on things that can’t be controlled. Instead, turn to information sources that provide reliable information about how to protect yourself.

 

Engage Yourself in Physical Activities

 

Try to do activities that stimulate your mind and body. They will help you return to your normal life. Recognize the things you can control. Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch, meditate, and exercise. Keep yourself grounded. Try to get regular sleep and maintain a healthy diet. 

 

Make Time For Yourself

 

Make time to unwind and remind yourself that strong feelings will fade. Share your concerns and how you are feeling with a friend or family member. Maintain healthy relationships. Maintain a sense of hope and positive thinking.

 

Stay Connected with Your Loved Ones

 

Staying at home and distancing yourself from others should not mean you are completely isolated. Reaching out to people you trust is one of the best ways to reduce anxiety, depression, loneliness, and boredom during social distancing, quarantine, and isolation. You can use the phone, email, text messaging, and social media to connect with friends, family, and others. Talk“face to face” with friends and loved ones using Skype or FaceTime.

 

Bring Positive Energy to Your Home

 

Find opportunities to amplify positive and hopeful stories and positive images of local people who have experienced COVID-19. For example, stories of people who have recovered or who have supported a loved one and are willing to share their experience.

 

Most importantly, do not shy away from seeking mental health help. Emotional distress and anxiety are natural during pandemics such as the COVID-19 outbreak. Seeking help is the first step towards getting and staying well. Call your healthcare provider if stress reactions interfere with your daily activities for several days.

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