This year blew in a new, rapid, unexpected change to the typical way of life – Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID 19). Even as the world takes action to slow the spread of the disease, it still manages to pillage and plunder everyday people’s daily routines and social interactions. This year has been full of chaos, disorder and confusion, and the long and ongoing abrupt end to social normalcy has affected the minds of most people around the globe. So then, what can we do contest the effects of what is now commonly called coronavirus anxiety?
In late June, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated that 40 percent of U.S. adult reported wrestling with some mental health issue. Hartford Health Care breaks down these increases by age:
18 – 29
30 - 39
70 – 79
These elevated reports caused the CDC to suggest adding intervention and prevention to the COVID-19 public health response.
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) suggest that as the country has begun to adjust to this new way of life, and it’s now time for many to re-enter society; this is reportedly causing a different type of anxiety. With so many stressors affecting so many people, what can we do?
The CDC has some suggestions.
5. TAKE BREAKS FROM THE NEWS
We need to stay informed, but let’s face it, the news can be stressful. Give yourself some time away from breaking news and 24/7 virus updates. Take some time throughout the day and be mindful, living in the present moment.
4. DO SOME ENJOYABLE ACTIVITIES
Hobbies and leisure activities are great stress relievers. Take some time to do some things you like to do, maybe even somethings you haven't been able to do in a long time. Simple things like drawing or journaling can be helpful.
3. CONNECT WITH OTHERs
Of course, social distance to stay safe, but many community- or faith-based organizations provide additional ways to stay connected with friends and family. You can also look for a support group for people dealing with coronavirus anxiety.
2. TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY
Make some healthy food choices, get the required sleep, exercise and meditate; taking care of your body has a tremendous effect on health, both physical and mental.
1. TEND TO YOUR EMOTIONAL HEALTH
Finally, know where and how to get treatment. Although everything on this list helps improve your emotional health, nothing beats seeking the care of a professional. With so many factors affecting metal health, it’s always better to get the opinion of a healthcare provider. Some still believe there is something wrong with seeing someone about mental health, but this is misguided. We should all seek to be more safe than sorry.
Some problems need immediate attention, the CDC list resources for issues that need special and imminent attention. If you feel depressed or anxious, do hesitate to ask help; mental health is a part of total health.