Health Watch

Coping with COVID 19

In response to Covid-19, government officials have closed schools, businesses deemed non-essential, banned social gatherings, and even ordered residents to stay at home. In these very unsettling and uncertain times, people can start to experience high levels of stress. In response to these orders, many adults and children may be experiencing both mental and physical strains on their health. Physical isolation and decreased certainty about ones future can increase this stress.

Mental Health 

Decreased mental health during a global pandemic can be due to many reasons. As Covid 19 cases continue to rise, unemployment among Americans has reached historic levels. This bring many challenges to those who are affected by this disease. Many adults are also experiencing income insecurity, uncertainty about their health, and worries surrounding the health of their loved ones. People who are at high risk for catching Coronavirus or are isolating alone, may be experiencing heightened levels of mental problems and having a harder time coping.

Health care professionals have recommended various ways to help maintain mental health and stay positive during this pandemic:

  • Limit intake of news daily
  • Keep in touch with family and friends through phone calls, texts, or social media
  • Exercise regularly

Practicing self-care and taking time out of the day for yourself is a great way to keep both your mind and body healthy. People with existing mental health conditions could be at high risk for increasing signs of depression, etc. so it’s important to check in on your loved ones.

Physical Health

Decreased mental health can also have massive implications on a person’s physical health. Along with keeping your mind healthy, it’s crucial to maintain physical health as well. Exercising and keeping a daily routine can help boost serotonin levels. Some examples of  someone experiencing decreased physical health are:

  •  Trouble falling and staying asleep
  •  Substance abuse
  •  Decreased attentiveness
  •  Decreased appetite

There are plenty of ways to make sure you are staying physically fit and healthy during the pandemic without over exerting yourself. Healthcare workers recommend  that a person tries to:

  • Exercise or meditate
  • Avoid alcohol or drugs
  • Eat healthy

By keeping our minds and bodies healthy, we can better cope with this pandemic.

Adolescents

With the closure of schools around the country, over 30 million kids are currently working from home. Many families are experiencing a new kind of dynamic within their households. With decreased communication with teachers and peers, and limited access to mental health resources such as school counselors, many children and teens can experience decreased mental and physical health. It’s important for parents to talk to their children about the pandemic and to encourage healthy practices such as hand washing and exercise. Children may have a lot of questions during this time so it’s important to listen to them and talk about any troubles they might be having.

There are many ways we can all stay connected during this time without being physically near one another. Looking out for ourselves as well as checking-in with one another, we can more easily navigate through these uncertain times.

 

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