It’s no secret people across the globe have been affected by the COVID pandemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control, adults have reported an increase in mental health issues since its development. Individuals who never had mental health issues now exhibit depression, anxiety, and panic attacks.
The numbers might continue to go up the longer the pandemic goes on. To help minimize the issues, everyone needs to examine what they feel and implement tools to assist movement through each day. Though it can be scary, there is a way to push through and come out more resilient as things settle down.
Here are a few ways to prioritize your mental health during a pandemic.
Talking to someone is a critical component to maintain your mental health. Though you might not be able to speak to someone at their office, you can do so through a telehealth meeting.
This should be done in locations where the pandemic has been slowed. For instance, anxiety counselling in Canada is still needed for those who were affected by issues over the last few months. Online counseling sites like Wellin5 offer telehealth meetings at a low cost.
Mindfulness is the practice of focusing on the present instead of an unknown future. As a species, we like to control the outcome of our lives. However, the universe isn’t built that way. What happens the next day or the next hour is totally unexpected.
This causes anxiety in us because we don’t know what will happen in the pandemic. Will the number of cases go up or go down? Will restrictions increase to the point we’re quarantined again?
Instead of going down that route, you need to put yourself into today. For some, that involves mentally detailing everything they see. For others, it means a focus on their senses. Both coping tools can calm you down and put your mind back into the present.
Sometimes, the medication goes along with therapy and mindfulness. This is especially true if the anxiety and depression are so great that it causes problems working, eating, sleeping, or dealing with your family. With medication, the sharp edges of those conditions are blunted.
Know that medication is not a complete solution. Furthermore, it might take time to find the right combination of pharmaceuticals. However, when it starts to work, it can begin to clear the mental fog and allow you to resume a happier life.
Diet & Exercise
The worst thing to do for mental health is nothing. Sitting on the couch while you binge food and television shows can cause you to degrade. Though it sounds fun, watching all those programs made before the pandemic can invoke a sadness about what was lost. That increases depression and anxiety about the future.
No matter how it’s done, you need to eat healthily and partake in regular exercise. Even if it means walking in place for 30 minutes in your bedroom, you want to stay active. Exercise releases a combination of brain chemicals that keep you calm and increase your joy.
Look Away From The News
Stop checking the pandemic numbers every hour. Also, don’t keep 24-hour news channels on in the background. The constant inundation of current events will definitely cause increased anxiety and bouts of depression.
To avoid these triggers, watch vide speakers with positive messages. Listen to feel-good music. Read a lighthearted book. You can also take some time and journal your feelings. When you get the urge to tune into the news, redirect your attention elsewhere.
There are several tools you can use to prioritize your mental health during a pandemic. Other items, like meditation or supplements, can also help ease the issues related to panic attacks and depression. However, they only work if you take advantage of them.
Whatever you do, don’t crawl deeper into your mental health issue. If you feel hope fading away, contact 911 or a crisis hotline immediately. Let someone help you through the roughest parts so you can start to make your way out of the dark recesses of the rabbit hole.
Finally, have hope. The pandemic will end soon enough.