How to Deal With Mental Health Issues Post Covid-19
If you happen to be reading this, no matter where you are on the planet during the darkest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, you and I have probably shared similar panics, fears, and Anxiety about the future at the time. In some ways, your mental health has been affected by COVID.
How COVID is Affecting Our Mental Health In The First Place
Whether you first heard about the origins of the bat-borne virus at the end of the evening news, or as a tidbit at the end of your favorite streaming news service, this story will likely seem so compared to all the others. Distant and unimportant "big." "What was going on in the world at the time.
COVID-19 swept across the globe with near immediate speed. It became the headline, even though its effects caused enormous suffering for everyone it touched.
So fast it seemed, the closing of schools and businesses soon followed the shutdown of industries. As far as I can remember, this was my first clear glimpse into the impending danger of our world.
While forced to live strictly indoors, we were still required to find a way to self-sustain without any outside interaction or physical labor. Our only option was to adhere to strict orders forbidding us from working.
Eventually, when we were allowed to go out to buy groceries and supplies, we had to stand in long lines at stores with empty shelves while trying to find ways to get back before the lockdown.
Fortunately, humans have been able to demonstrate perseverance and resourcefulness. We quickly learned that universal precautions such as frequent hand washing, mask use, and social distancing can help stop the spread of the virus, rather than waiting for a catastrophic virus die-off.
In addition, pharmaceutical engineers have been able to design vaccines that appear to significantly reduce the severity of symptoms associated with infection or provide overall immunity to the virus. As a result, the rate of infection, hospitalization, and subsequent death from Covid-19 has declined significantly and appears to continue to decline—at least for now.
Even as millions of people die from the virus and millions more suffer from a range of uncomfortable, sometimes debilitating and often long-lasting symptoms, the emotional toll continues to decline at an incalculable rate.
We haven't left the water yet. In fact, a new variant of the virus is emerging in Europe and may be on its way back to North America if it hasn't already.  While most precautions and restrictions are either no longer in place or will soon be completely phased out, COVID-19 is still affecting us all in one way or another, whether you have actually been infected with the virus or not .
The Long-Term Impact of COVID on Mental Health
As a licensed psychotherapist and professional mental health interventionist with years of trauma treatment experience, I vividly remember thinking that COVID-19 would have a long-term impact on our collective mental health, especially early in the pandemic, when the infection It seems to be multiplying almost every day.
As we begin to emerge from the emotional wreckage of the COVID-19 pandemic, while much of the physical landscape may look the same as before, for many of us, the subconscious realm of our mental health has shifted . event. Unlike hospitalizations and death rates, there may never be a way to truly measure the full impact of the pandemic on mental health, especially as the problem persists to this day.
While social distancing may have helped stop the spread of the virus, it suggests it may also have inadvertently contributed to a corresponding increase in anxiety, depression and even suicide rates around the world. Experts have warned that the virus could continue to affect our lives in one way or another for years to come.
5 Ways to Help You Take Care of Your Mental Health During COVID
Similar to the momentum created by an undersea earthquake, the harsh reality is that we may just be shaken by the virus itself, and the momentum created by the pandemic may help offset a more A devastating mental health tsunami is coming.
So here are five ways you can take care of your mental health while COVID-19 persists.
1. Seek Professional Help
I know it sounds simple, but for many of us, getting help can be one of the most difficult tasks, especially when it comes to seeking professional help for our mental health.
I recommend consulting a board-certified psychiatrist to explore medication options that can help ease any combination of psychiatric symptoms you may be experiencing, such as restlessness, insomnia, low energy, and low mood.
At the same time, I encourage you to also consult a licensed psychologist who can help you deal with and resolve the root cause of your problem.
There is no virtual substitute for face-to-face human contact when it comes to your mental health. Don't want to sound like a social scientist, humans are inherently social creatures. We interact with others instinctively. Therefore, we build relationships for a variety of reasons, such as: B. Personal safety, emotional satisfaction, and even financial security.
So, this might not only be the time to reconnect with old friends and family that have been strained by distance and illness, but it might also be the perfect time to share a shared survival experience with a new relationship with the other person you share right now. Grief and even loss related to the virus.
3. Go Outside
Despite a marked reduction in reported cases of Covid-19, people can still contract the virus even with vaccinations, boosters, etc. Still, beyond socializing with others, it may be time to get out there and reconnect with your surroundings, whether around the corner or around the world.
I will never forget the feeling of being trapped during lockdown. However, maybe like you, I'm trying to make the most of the situation.I distinctly remember watching countless episodes of old TV shows, playing a lot of gin rummy, and eating what felt like endless over the top ramen soup. However, I also remember feeling depressed and isolated at times, even though all of my immediate family was there for me.
While it may be difficult at first to get outside and look around after a storm, the sooner you assess the damage, the sooner you should be able to rebuild and hopefully return to a more normal life.
If you still feel insecure, start with small steps. Maybe start with a short drive near you. From there, try dinner at your favorite restaurant. Then, depending on your budget, plan a few days to clear your head.
4. Be Productive
They say idle hands are the devil's workshop, and I agree.In other words, if your time isn't doing anything productive, you're probably doing something you'll eventually regret. Research has shown that people who are highly productive are less likely to experience severe symptoms of anxiety and depression than those who report lower productivity.
That being said, while the restrictions put in place to stop the spread of the Covid-19 virus appear to be effective, they also appear to severely limit the ability of billions of people around the world to be widely regarded as productive. self-esteem.
Fortunately, however, the labor market is proving to be strong, depending on the industry. You may just have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone a little and explore opportunities you might not have considered before the pandemic.
In addition, the epidemic has also become a turning point in the lives of many people.
Instead of waiting to go back to the office, many started their own businesses. I think one of the most effective ways to take care of your mental health during Covid-19 is to find a way to turn adversity into productivity.
Perhaps the easiest way to stay mentally healthy while COVID-19 persists is to stay active by exercising.
I think we were all a little crazy in the early days of the pandemic, especially when we were all forced to stay at home. Most of us can't even walk the block, let alone ride a bike in the park. All gyms are closed, and when I go to the department store to buy dumbbells, all the gym equipment is sold out.
So I started working out in my backyard doing push-ups, squats, lunges and crunches.I have to admit, I felt a little embarrassed and uncomfortable at first because all the neighbors were watching me from their balconies. So I turned up the tune and got rid of some foo fighters.
Ultimately, I learned to quickly adapt to my surroundings and make the most of what I have, rather than feel bad about not being able to access it. I ended up losing ten pounds, although I seem to have regained that weight recently. Regardless, research shows that people who do some form of regular exercise have a much better prognosis in overcoming symptoms of depression caused by the COVID-19 virus.
All in all, universal precautions such as mask wearing, hand washing and social distancing appear to be playing an important role in slowing the spread of the COVID-19 virus, while vaccines appear to be preventing further infection or at least significantly reducing the severity of symptoms in those already infected. As a result, infections, hospitalizations, and subsequent deaths appear to have been significantly reduced.
Although fewer cases of the virus are now being reported, people around the world are still being infected with one or another variant of the self-mutating virus while suffering from a range of symptoms associated with COVID-19, such as lungs, persistent cough, fever and lost taste.
The increasing rate of people suffering from mental disorders caused by the pandemic has been offset by the simultaneous increase in people reporting any number of symptoms. You don't have to live in shame; seek help.
Travel restrictions have been lifted. This gives you the opportunity to resolve the cause of your symptoms by doing things like improving your overall health. This mitigates the severity and frequency of your symptoms.
Considering the Covid-19 virus's ongoing presence, maintaining both our mental and physical health is imperative. Because of this, people should consider using universal methods to help them care for their mental wellness.