COVID-19 pandemic has currently affected people’s daily routines, jobs, and businesses, causing economic hardships and emotional strain. The fear and panic surrounding the new virus in addition to the social distancing norms are impacting the behavioral health of people worldwide. Additionally, financial stress, job insecurity, and unemployment across industries are starting to impact the mental health and wellbeing of various individuals as well. During these uncertain times, you might also be experiencing some changes, but coping with stress in a healthy way will help you get through this better.
Mental Health Disorders
Mental health disorders are a wide range of illnesses that affect mood, thinking, and behavior. According to the WHO, mental health disorders include depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, psychoses, dementia, autism, and other developmental disorders.
Stress During A Pandemic
Starting from one city and spreading to almost every corner of the world, the novel coronavirus is currently affecting millions of people. While the physical impacts of the virus are easily noticeable, the mental health impacts are not as apparent. Besides the disease itself, various physical distancing and isolation measures accompanied by economic fallouts are causing stress, fear, and anxiety among many people.
Many researchers and the WHO considers an impact on psychological well-being as the consequence of COVID-19. Recently, a researcher from Boston university school of public health warned people of an upcoming wave of mental health disorders. The study predicts that COVID-19 could cause a mental health crisis as various large scale disasters were followed by an increase in mental health issues. In the past disasters such as 9/11, the SARS epidemic, and the hurricane Ire were all accompanied by a huge wave of mental health disorders.
5 Signs That You Might Be Stressed
According to the CDC, stress during COVID-19 could have the following signs:
- Fear and panic about your health and your family’s health
- Stress about income insecurity or job loss
- Disrupted sleep patterns and sleep disorders
- Worsening mental and physical health
- Increased dependence on substance use
4 Simple Ways On How To Deal With Your Mental Health During A Pandemic
As of today, there is no proven way to prevent mental illness. However, you could follow a few things to take better care of your mind and reduce various stress triggers.
1. Maintain a routine
Even if you are working from home, the predictability of a routine can help you feel more in control. So start following sleep schedules, workout regimes, and study schedules to cope with this situation.
2. Stay busy
Dwelling in unnecessary negative thoughts during free time can worsen stress. So, occupy yourself with a hobby/activity or simply keep yourself away from any negative thoughts.
3. Stay connected
Talk to your loved ones and distance yourself from social isolation. Thanks to technology, you can socialize virtually and check up on your loved ones from any part of the world.
4. Consult a doctor
Don’t shy away from your psychological issues and consult a doctor or a therapist. Like any illness, mental illness such as depression or anxiety won’t go away on its own, so getting professional help is often the best choice. If you are scared to step out of the house and go to a hospital, you could always consult a doctor online.