The coronavirus lockdown has put a great impact on the mental health of people. The majority of the individuals living in self-isolation are worried about their future, jobs, etc.
In the latest Global Advisory survey, 43 percent of the respondents said they are anxious about getting back to normal life. 34 percent of them are worried about their health, 12 percent are angry about restrictions about their freedom, and 15 percent are feeling lonely. The survey was conducted on 14,000 people in 15 major countries.
While social distancing is necessary to curb the spread of the COVID-19, it’s also necessary to cope with the psychological impacts of self-isolation as well. How to do that? Read on for complete information.
Psychological Impacts of The Coronavirus Quarantine
While there’s no potential treatment for the coronavirus found yet, social isolation can help break the transmission chain of the disease. But it’s not easy. Research says that social distancing is affecting people’s lives in different ways.
According to a study performed in late 2019, individuals who are forced to live in self-isolation are at great risk of anxiety, depression, insomnia, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms. The symptoms can worsen over time.
According to a review published by researchers at King’s College London, frustration, inadequate supplies, boredom, limited information & financial loss are the key stressors that result in psychological distress. However, these effects can last even after life returns to normal. The review was based on studies on the psychological effects of quarantine, and also the researches performed to curb the spread of Ebola, H1N1, MERS, and SARS.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, excessive worrying and panic attacks can cause sleep problems, thus affecting your ability to focus and handle daily activities.
Protecting Mental Health During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Limit The News
Reading lots of news about the coronavirus, and social media posts about the problems related to the disease can lead to panic attacks, anxiety, and other mental health conditions.
Those who are living in quarantine agree that they are often anxious about their health. They are often worried about their families and the people they know.
Staying away from social media and news platforms for a few weeks can help you cope with anxiety. Why? Because there’s a lot of misinformation on the web, and believing it can make you mentally ill.
If you want the latest updates about the COVID-19, stick to trusted sources only, such as WHO, CDC, etc.
To reduce stress levels and boost energy levels, start exercising from today. You might be thinking that during the COVID-19 pandemic, all the fitness centers are closed, how can you exercise? Well, there’s a wide range of exercises that you can do at home. No need to go out. No need to buy fitness equipment. Just download fitness apps and find some best online exercise videos.
Research says that regular physical inactivity may result in reduced muscle mass and other health problems. So, exercise daily to boost mood, sleep & concentration, and reduce stress levels. When you exercise, your body releases more anandamide, thus increasing the feelings of wellbeing.
Control Negative Thoughts
I will lose all my money, how would I survive? How could I support my family when I have no job? I can’t return to normal life again. Etc… Negative thoughts can affect different corners of your life. Research says that staying away from negative thoughts can help you relieve stress, anxiety, and other psychological conditions.
How to do that? The best way is to stay busy and utilize your time to do something good. It can be upgrading your skills, helping others, cultivating your hobbies, or anything that makes you happy. Whenever you feel anxious due to the COVID-19 pandemic, say to your mind that you aren’t alone. Think that things will get better soon.
Get Emotional Support
Talk to your friends, family, or colleagues to get emotional support to reduce anxiety and promote wellbeing. Discussing your problems with your loved ones and getting help to manage them will make you feel happy while managing psychological distress. Use video conferences, voice chats, etc. to talk to your support network instead of visiting them physically.
Research says that spending time with pets can also help you boost mental health. Playing with dogs and cats increases dopamine and serotonin levels and reduces stress hormones. You can notice the mood changes by interacting with animals for just ten minutes.
Using Cannabis During COVID-19 Pandemic
Many have a question—can marijuana help manage the COVID-19 symptoms?
Well, there’s no scientific evidence related to this. However, marijuana can help cope with stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, etc. thus improving overall health.
The cannabis plant contains chemical compounds that have amazing medicinal properties. When these cannabinoids are delivered into the body, they interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, thus boosting mood, sleep, and stimulating appetite.
During the coronavirus outbreak, marijuana dispensaries are kept open, allowing people to buy cannabis products. Patients suffering from anxiety, depression, PTSD can use marijuana for managing their symptoms. However, you should follow some COVID-19 health & safety precautions to stay safe during the pandemic-
- Prefer safe marijuana consumption methods, such as cannabis oils, edibles, topicals, etc.
- Don’t share joints, blunts, or bongs with anyone.
- Visit only licensed dispensaries to purchase high-quality cannabis products
- Prefer online cannabis delivery services over dispensary visits
- Stock at least a month of marijuana supplies
Getting an MMJ Card Online
In a legalized state, you need a medical marijuana card to access state-licensed dispensaries. But, during the coronavirus pandemic, visiting a doctor’s clinic is full of risks. So, you should prefer telemedicine to see a doctor online. Here’s the complete process-
- Sign up an account
- Talk to a licensed doctor through HIPAA-compliant platform
- Receive your MMJ recommendation letter in PDF format via email
Using telemedicine services can help you to apply for your card from home. This helps you to meet the social distancing goal and stay protected from the coronavirus.
Social distancing is effective in curbing the spread of the COVID-19. However, staying at home can lead to the development of certain psychological disorders such as stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, etc. These disorders can interfere with patients’ ability to handle daily tasks, thus need to be managed as soon as possible.
There are many ways to boost mental health during the COVID-19 quarantine. Exercising helps in releasing more anandamide, thus making you feel good and cope with stress. Spending time with animals can help you get emotional support to manage your anxiety levels.
For cannabis users, there’s no restriction to consume marijuana provided they are following the rules & regulations. Still, you need to follow some precautions to stay safe. These include avoiding sharing joints and bongs with others, preferring online ordering over dispensary visits, using safe cannabis consumption methods, buying only lab-tested products from trusted sellers, etc.