Coronavirus or COVID-19 had not only affected our lives physically rather it has a huge effect on our mental health as well. All the factors involving and affecting mental health during COVID-19 and the ways of coping up will be discussed in the article below.
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Factors Affecting Mental Health During COVID-19 Pandemic
The pandemic of COVID-19 is stressful and affecting people in all ways. The Fear and anxiety about this disease are so much that people who were otherwise healthy before leads towards anxiety, depression as well as Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
COVID-19 created a surge of strong emotions in every age group of people. This also includes people who were front liners for example doctors, nurses, paramedical staff, and healthcare authorities. All of a sudden social lives of people changed and including Social distancing and being in isolation were the top factors.
However, there are many other factors too that leave a strong impact on the mental health of the people. Coping with preventive measures, wearing masks, keeping social distance release a rush of stress.
Stress and anxiety during a COVID-19 pandemic revolve around these factors listed below:
- Fear from the virus itself.
- Worry about self-health and your loved ones.
- Stress about financial strains.
- Job-related stress including loss of a job, going on a job and getting affected.
- Worsening your already existing health problems.
- Change of eating patterns.
- Difficulty sleeping or sleeping excessively.
- Worsening of already having mental health conditions.
- Excessive use of alcohol, tobacco, and other substances.
Coping Up With Mental Health During COVID-19
The first step is awareness and self-realization. Understanding of what effects COVID-19 has and have put on your mental health. Get yourself educated enough so you can and ready to cope up with all the upcoming hurdles.
I understand that this disease and its outcomes are without a doubt very stressful and you are continuously concerned about it. The biggest treatment for fear and stress is to avoid it in the first place but a situation like this pandemic stressor can’t be avoided.
The steps I am mentioning below will have you ease your mind to some extent.
KEEP YOURSELF UP TO DATE
Follow the official news websites, or websites from health authorities to get updates and new recommendations about COVID-19. Like, recently, the news that was in popularity like mouthwash killed COVID-19, new strain emerging in the UK, or the vaccines updates. Keeping yourself updated will provide better help in the future.
This will also help you in avoiding self medications and yet increasing self-control. I am saying this because I have seen people stocking and taking every medication which is being approved or heard by word of mouth. Keep enough knowledge so you can avoid doing so and also stop others as well.
I always emphasize and also the internet is loaded with the term “A healthy body leads towards a healthy mind”. Thus, whatever you will impact your body and eventually your mind. That is why proper and healthy nutrition is advised during periods of stress as well.
The benefits of exercising daily or at least 5 times a day are endless. In fact, benefits are far beyond only weight loss. It shapes your body, improves your metabolism, releases your stress, and helps in fighting many diseases like hypertension, diabetes, obesity, heart issues, and even minimizes the bad outcomes of COVID-19.
MEDITATION & BREATHING CONTROL
For releasing the stress and avoid depression nothing is more useful than meditation. I have already discussed the advantages of meditation in detail. Please check it out here.
Breathing control is also a form of meditation whose purpose is the same to serve.
GOOD AMOUNT OF SLEEP
Sleep is a potent stress diminisher. Following a proper routine for sleep, restores and calms your body. Not only this but also tends to regulate your mood positively, improves concentration, and clarifies decision-making powers. You will be in a better state of mind and can solve problems inefficient way. Hence, you will better able to cope with stress when you’re well-rested.
AVOID USING TOBACCO AND ALCOHOL
Generally, people increase the use of addictive products while they are in a state of stress. This is done due to the mindset that products like tobacco and alcohol help them in calming them down and releasing their stress. But, the reality is the opposite.
Any addictive product or a CNS stimulant like caffeine, nicotine, , etc when excessively used will depress your mind rather than elevating your mood.
ENGAGE IN EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
The total world is in a state of lockdown on/off for over a year now. People mostly have to stay at home and don’t have many activities to do. Try to engage yourself in some extracurricular activities that you like. This can include painting, knitting, cooking, learning new skills online, and much more.
SPEND TIME WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY
Family and friends are a crucial part of everyone’s life. I know that most of you might not be afraid for yourself during a pandemic but your worry is for your friend’s and family’s safety. Likewise, spending a good amount of time with them will feel you less stressed about COVID-19 and will also help you vent out.
TAKE BREAKS FOR THE SAKE OF YOUR MIND
Don’t try to watch and grab information 24/7 about COVID-19. Instead, take a break from hearing and reading news about this. Don’t always go on social media or google and search for COVID-19 news. Letting your mind always thinking and engaging in this can be stressful.
CONTACT A PROFESSIONAL
This tip is for people who are unable to control their stress and anxiety during the ongoing pandemic of COVID-19 despite trying all the above measures. Consult a professional. There is no harm in accepting your state of mind.
The Bottom Line
To be conclusive, no matter what we do it is hard to cope up with your mental health during COVID-19. What are our hands is only to take enough precautions and leave rest up to God’s will. Stressing over something will not help you prevent it or treat it. Instead, it will have more negative impacts on your health and the people around you.