COVID-19 is rampaging around the globe with millions affected and causing more than 175000 deaths. It started as a significant illness in a small part of China province has blown into a health and economic crisis. There are thousands of articles and news circulating among the social media platform and the whole COVID crisis may be stressful to lots of people. There is significant fear and anxiety among masses especially surrounding the infection hotspots and in elderly individuals. Economic breakdown as well as the health problems posed by COVID may cause sleep and diet disturbances. There may be mental deterioration and relapses in those who are previously affected by chronic mental conditions. It is as important to maintain a balanced mental state and therefore identifying stressed individuals and helping them is as important as fighting the infection.
Here are some tips which will help protect the ailing mind:
- News about COVID is everywhere and keeps changing 24/7. Social media platform buzz with circulations about the virus. Switching off social media channels and taking a break from all COVID 19 news stories is necessary to avoid stress. With physical and transport lockdown preventing you walking out, it is also quite necessary to initiate lockdown of cell phones, social media and communication devices for a while. Spend time with family members, start a hobby, practice exercises to keep you entertained.
- Make sure to get adequate sleep. Practice deep breathing exercise, yoga and transcendental meditations to ease the effects of stress.
- Watch out for behavioural changes in children and teenages. Some children and teens may also be affected by circulating news about COVID. Talk to them and clear all mistaken and inaccurate COVID information. Support and reassurances to the affected children and teens will prevent mental disorders.
- Checkout for elders and people who are at high risks of infection. Frequent monitoring of health is important. Encourage them to practice safe hygiene and practice social distancing. Every day communication and support is essential to avoid elders in the family from getting affected by COVID stress.
- Most essential services are unaffected by COVID lockdowns. Stresses about maintaining household essentials are also not uncommon. If those are affecting mental status, make a weekly list of essentials and stock up. Stocking up of house-hold essentials is important if you have loved ones staying away from you.
- Stay updated on COVID only from validated sources. Not all stories and information about COVID is true. Validate the information to others misinformed by the same – your loved ones, elders, children and community.
- Stay away from alcohol, smoking and drug abuse. There are reported cases of drug abuse in teens and adults during the COVID crisis. Illegal and abuse potential substances are negative and ill effects on mental health.
- Watch out for fresh and relapsing mental symptoms especially if you or your loved ones suffer from chronic mental conditions.
- Call a doctor or ask your healthcare provider for help and assistance if necessary.
You can ask a doctor online to know more on COVID-19 and to discuss related health and mental concerns.