A pandemic can be stressful. Anxiety and fear about the uncertainty given by the pandemic can cause strong emotions in children and adults. Local health protocols such as social distancing could make an individual feel lonely and isolated. It may also increase anxiety and stress. However, the protocols given by our health experts are needed to lessen the spread of COVID-19.
Stress during a disease outbreak can sometimes cause;
- Worsening of mental health condition
- Worsening of chronic health problems
- Increased use of tobacco, alcohol, and other substances
- Difficulty sleeping and concentrating
- Changes in eating and sleep patterns
- Worrying and scared about your financial state or job, loss of support services you rely on, and own health and the health of your loved ones
Everyone Reacts To Stressful Situations Differently
Your response to the stress during a pandemic depends on your background, social support from loved ones, health/emotional background, financial situation, and the community you live in. Changes might occur because of the pandemic and the ways we try to lessen the infection from other people.
People who might respond strongly to the stress of pandemic include:
- People who take care of their loved ones
- People who are at higher risk for a severe condition from COVID-19
- Teens and children
- Frontline workers
- Those who work in the food industry
- People who have mental health conditions
- People who have lost their jobs
- People experiencing homelessness
Healthy Ways To Cope With Stress
- Know what to do: If you are sick or concerned about the COVID-19, contact a health professional before you begin with any self-treatment.
- Know where and how you can get treatment: Treatment is important especially if you feel ill.
- Take care of your emotional health: Emotional health care helps you think openly and respond to the crucial needs to protect your family and yourself.
- Take a break: hearing repeatedly about the pandemic might be upsetting. Take a break and focus on the things that make you happy.
- Take care of your body: You can exercise, have a well-balanced diet, having quality sleep, and avoiding excess intake of alcohol or drugs.
- Unwind: Try doing some activities that you enjoy.
- Connect: Talk with people you trust about what you feel or your concerns. You can connect as well with your loved ones through online when social distancing is still implemented in your place.
Take Care Of Yourself And Your Community
Taking care of your family and friends might help you relieve your stress. However, it must be balanced with care for yourself as well. You might also help others to cope with their stress such as providing social support. It can make your community stronger as well. During this time when there is an implementation of social distancing, people might still be socially connected and take care of their mental well-being. Video chats or phone calls can be helpful for you and your loved one to feel less lonely, less isolated, and socially connected. Check with them from time to time because almost everyone is facing challenges with different kinds during this time of the pandemic.