2020 and 2021 throw us in pandemic with quarantine and lockdown. Lockdown was a vacation in the beginning. Dalgona coffee and Ludo were trending. But as time goes on, the negativity and depression started beating us from inside. Countless death, poverty, uncertainty, insecurity become part of our life. Pandemic snatched our mental peace along with uncounted lives. But keeping mental sanity is important for living a healthy life and you must take care of your mental health especially during such a time of crisis. You may have several questions and stereotypical thoughts about mental health. This article will give you all the answers to those.
What is Mental Health?
Mental health is a state of our mind, how we are feeling mentally or emotionally, determined by the thoughts running in our mind. A proper mental health includes cognitive, behavioral, and emotional wellbeing. Mental health is responsible for all your actions and reactions. How you think, feel or act in a particular situation, is determined by your mental health.
Why mental health is important?
In today’s life, mental health is as important as physical health. Physical and mental health is associated with each other. It is proved that depression and anxiety lead to heart and vascular diseases. Also, your mental health is not just maintaining your psychological sanity but controlling your, social and personal life as well. All aspects of our life are related to mental health. So, to live a healthy life you must need good mental health along with healthy physic. It also helps you to tolerate failure and smoothen the path of your life. It gives you the strength to survive any situation with grace and confidence.
Impact of lockdown on Mental health:
Anxiety & Stress
We are facing a worldwide pandemic, feeling of anxiety is pretty obvious. COVID and lockdown lead us towards an uncertain future full of challenges. Every day we wake up with uncertainty, even our lives are at a stake now. Students and teenagers are facing anxiety and depression more than adults. Schools, colleges, and universities of our country are closed since March 2020. Students have an uncertain future. In addition, over 2 million people have lost their jobs already. Several industries like hotel, aviation, tourism smacked hard by COVID. All the board exams were delayed and got cancelled. Job vacancies are also limited. All of these are making people stressed and anxious. Media also played an important role in increasing anxiety and stress. All-day broadcast of the negative impact of COVID is also a huge reason for stress and anxiety.
Loneliness & Depression
Lockdown may bring us closer to our family but gifted us depression and loneliness. Our days start with the count of dead bodies and end with the number of infectious. Also due to lockdown, we all stuck at our home, things getting worse day by day, we are away from our friends, loved ones or even family. This increases the feeling of loneliness. The fear of losing family or close ones is always there in our mind and it is hard to express ourselves over technological devices. And mostly we cannot express our feelings and fears to anyone. That makes people depressed. Also, everywhere people are just talking about the problems only and solution looks far away and that is another main cause for depression during the lockdown.
Lockdown and COVID have major ramifications for the global economy with growing concerns about economic recession. Small and medium businesses along with several big industries have faced severe downfall during the pandemic. Street vendors and peddlers are living with zero income since 2020. Live artists, theater actors and people engaged with events also have no income. They need to look for other professions to support their family. Job retrenching and continuous pay cuts make us helpless. People are unable to manage minimum essentials for themselves and their families. These kinds of financial worries make people depressed and frustrated. It may even have led to suicidal thoughts.
Issues between Couples
COVID 19 has taken massive toll on everyone, including people in love. Love is the only positive vibe in this negative situation. But, living together with your partner under the same roof for 24*7 can make the relation extremely toxic at times. Living together in close quarters for long can surely disrupt the personal space for both the partners. Also, being together for long can make things dull and boring which leads to a toxic relationship. Apart from these, financial insecurities and the stress of “work from home” make us down, depressed and irritated which affect the relationship as well. Cases of domestic violence had seen a huge rise in this lockdown. Also, things have gone wrong for couples who don’t live together. Distance for long makes their relation toxic. Lack of productive communication between couples creates misunderstanding which spoils a healthy relationship.
Effect on Kids
Kids are most sensitive. And this lockdown changed their lives completely. Schools are closed for more than one year. Kids are spending time between walls in front of a screen. Laptops and technical gadgets have become their best friends. Also, the anxiety and stress of their parents affect them badly as well. Staying in the house for long makes kids lonely and depressed. The pressure of online classes makes them impatient. Also, the rate of domestic violence has increased incredibly during lockdown which affects the mental health of kids to a great extent.
Mental Stress for the COVID-19 Patients
COVID patients are also facing severe mental issues. COVID not just drained out all the physical strength but it’s difficult to remain mentally strong. During 14 days of isolation, patients are feeling lonely and depressed as they are away from their close ones. Also, people who are in hospitals and isolation centers are seeing deaths every day due to the same disease. This affects massively on the mental health of a COVID patient. COVID patients are not allowed to see their family for a long period of time which is depressing for them. They have tension for their own survival and worry for their families as well. So, all these make them vulnerable and weaken their mental health.
How to cope up with mental health issues during a lockdown:
• Stay away from negative news, especially news related to COVID deaths.
• Give time to your hobbies. Practice your hobbies regularly.
• Watch good and optimistic content. Stay away from negative or violent content as well.
• Cooking works as a stressbuster for many. Try to cook at least twice a week.
• Maintain a home exercise routine. Start your day with your home exercise routine.
• Yoga can be a good choice for coping up with mental health issues. Yoga is good for your mental health and physical health. Try to start your day with yoga.
• Meditation is also helpful for your mental health. It’s been shown to reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress. Meditation also helps to increase patience and concentration, which makes you more focused.
• Declutter your home at least thrice a week and maintain proper hygiene. Cleaning not only offers a sense of control in the face of uncertainty but also gives relief to your mind, body, and soul and reduces traumatic stress.
• Maintain a proper routine with discipline. Proper routine and discipline will help you to maintain your sanity.
• Try to learn or experience new things from home. Try to use your free time creatively. Use the internet to improve your skillset.
• Maintain a social life virtually. Have productive conversations with your family members. Try to communicate with people through the phone or the internet. Try to open up and share your thoughts with your friends and family.
• Watch good movies or web series or have a great meal with your family.
• Don’t forget to relax on the weekends and not think about work.
Still after trying these, if you cannot calm your mind, talk to someone close to you or take help may be of a counsellor. It is absolutely okay and nothing to be ashamed of, if you are having a mental health issue. But it is NOT okay if you confide yourself in it and worsen your mental health condition. We all need to understand Mental health problem is as normal as any physical ailment. Talk it out, take help and you will overcome this for sure!! And don’t forget after the dark nights only, we get to see the sunny mornings, so yes, better days will surely come!!