COVID-19’s Effect on Mental Health
Autumn Prior is the resident therapist here at the Rock and Fox Show. She told us that while social distancing is a necessary evil, she believes it is starting to take its toll on some people. Reality is setting in and is beginning to cause some to be afraid to step out into the public.
Many people are reporting that they are more anxious or depressed as the COVID-19 coronavirus is wreaking havoc on our personal worlds. She also said that she is seeing more and more substance use and abuse during this time. More people are turning to drugs and alcohol to help cope with anxiety and sadness.
Autumn strongly suggested paying close attention to three important things:
- Eat well
- Sleep well
- Maintain connectivity with family and friends
Autumn suggested having some goals that are set for each day. Clean out a closet, go out for a run on a nice day, or set aside some time to play board games with the kids.
Don't stress about the kid's homeschooling. "You are not a teacher for a reason," said Autumn. "Even if you are a teacher, you are not supposed to be teaching your own kids. Just ask any Little League coach how hard it is to coach your own children."
Should you stay on a schedule? Autumn said not necessarily. She said there's a fine line between keeping a schedule and being so determined to stick to the schedule that you become frustrated when you're unable to stick to it. It's not uncommon, said Autumn, to struggle to keep a schedule right now because we are dealing with things that no one has ever dealt with before.
This is a time to be compassionate with yourself. We're all figuring this out.
Finally, people generally get anxiety because they are trying to anticipate what is going to happen. The fact of the matter is that nobody really knows what is coming. We do know that infectious disease doctors are working around the clock to figure this out. Luckily, we can leave it to them. You are not going to be able to help them by worrying.
You'll never have another time in your life when you'll have this level of freedom to rest and enjoy your family. Looking at this as an opportunity as opposed to a burden can go a long way for your mental health.