The COVID-19 outbreak has created stress for the worldwide population. Self-isolation or quarantine, fear regarding the disease, or empty store shelves can negatively impact anxiety and depression. John Giorgi says the implications of mental health of the current unprecedented situation will affect everyone differently. The global concerns about the virus mean it is extremely vital to maintain normal routines with regards to exercise, nutrition, and sleep, especially in case of people having existing mental health issues. In the present situation, discovering ways to uphold one’s normal routine is crucial to reducing potential depressive thoughts and stress.
Tips to Maintain Mental Health at the Time of the Pandemic
According to John Giorgi, below are some effective tips that will help maintain one’s mental health during the pandemic.
. Filter Social Media and New
Constant news regarding the outbreak can make one feel relentless and exacerbate existing mental health issues. Thus, one needs to be careful regarding the balance to watch important news, and that news could disrupt their mental health or cause them to feel depressed. It is vital to seek trusted information like the NHS (National Health Service) website at definite times to adopt practical steps for protecting oneself and their loved ones. Most importantly, one should take breaks from various social media channels and also mute triggering accounts and keywords.
. Discuss Mental Health Openly
Some may feel that discussing their anxiety and depression needs no extra attention during these challenging times. But people must be encouraged to discuss their feelings openly. Different mental health crisis solutions and support helplines are available that can be of great help.
. Take an Anti-Depression Diet
During this crisis, anxiety may increase, but a well-nourished body can handle stress better. Traditional Mediterranean food or the anti-depression diet is preferred for its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. It comprises olive oil, seeds, nuts, berries, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to look after one’s mental health.
. Therapeutic Sleep
The majority of depressed people have sleep problems that may increase with fears due to the novel coronavirus. Sound sleep is a type of overnight therapy that helps to handle strong emotions effectively. One should wake up and also go to sleep every day at the same time. Having adequate sleep, having a hot bath, and no screen time at least 2 hours before bedtime can help.
During these challenging times, it is vital to keep exercising. Regular exercise helps produce chemicals like serotonin and dopamine that are equally effective as psychotherapy or antidepressant medication to treat milder depression. The majority of the people cannot access the gym during the pandemic. Thus, it is vital to maintain a day-to-day exercise routine, particularly at home. Professionals suggest a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise 3-4 times a week. Often people with depression struggle with exercise; thus, they must start with at least a 10-minute walk and gradually add a few minutes on a day-to-day basis.
So, if you or your loved one is suffering from mental health issues, consider these pointers to stay healthy.