Depression Is On The Rise During The Pandemic
The last 12 months have been a terrible time for most of us, having to endure lockdowns and the pressure of not being able to visit family and friends.
The Covid-19 pandemic has affected everybody on the planet. From personal relationships to businesses going bankrupt and the loss of income for many. It is unprecedented in our times and with no clear timeline as to when we can expect things to go back to the normal day-to-day life we enjoyed before, we have to take care of ourselves and others.
One of the unfortunate effects of lockdowns and restricted travel is that more people are seeking help for depression. Being able to only go outside for what is deemed essential purposes can have a profound negative effect on mental health.
Keeping Your Mind Healthy
Whilst many of us feel there’s nothing wrong and not feel affected by these measures, some people find it very hard to cope with the isolation of a lockdown. Humans are inherently social and being forced to stay alone or with just the people you live with can be stressful.
Marriages and family life have come under strain with people often spending all day together. It is understandable but can also make people depressed with the added pressure of trying to maintain the outside persona of being happy to help support your friends or family.
One of the tips you can do to try and keep you from being depressed within the household is by playing games with your family and friends. Board games or computer interactive games are ideal.
Making time for fun games and activities is important to remind you that you are not alone and being with your family is a great way to pass the time.
Whilst having time to yourself is also important, being with them is a great way to unwind your mind from the stress that we are all enduring.
Exercise Is Key To Help Maintain Your Mental Health
With the continuing pandemic, keeping healthy is not only a vital key to our physical health but also to our minds. Even though we are in lockdown it is still recommended that we exercise for at least an hour a day.
Government health advisors and medical physicians have all agreed that not only our bodies but also our mental health can benefit from regular exercise.
But don’t stray too far from home as some places or locations can be very strict about staying within a radius of your home when you have to do your exercise routine outdoors. Also, take the necessary health protocols when leaving the home. Wear a mask for your own and other people’s benefit.
Exercising with other people from your household is also a good practice and is recommended. This not only limits your contact with other people but also creates a bonding time with your family. Practicing social distancing though is very important even with your family members.
Remember that keeping active can have huge benefits not only to your physical wellness but also to your mental health and this should not be overlooked.
Talk To Friends And Family
The ongoing pandemic causes stress to everybody but help if you are feeling depressed is closer than you may think.
Whilst being locked down in your home apart from the occasional trip to the shops or essential tasks can be depressing, your family can be the first source of relief from the stress you are experiencing.
Make sure you try to keep a positive mood and engage in a pleasant activity or conversation with your family. Try to be that fun person and be with them as much as possible. Not only will this keep the atmosphere at home alive, but it is also a good way to relieve stress.
With the help of advanced technology, it has never been easier to contact friends anywhere in the world. With social media and applications like Zoom, video messaging has become available to us all.
Keeping in touch with them even virtually can be a big help in reducing stress and depression. People are just a click or a phone call away, and this way, you are not only helping yourself but possibly helping them too. You’ll never know, but they may also be feeling depressed.
What Is Depression And What Are The Signs
Depression is an illness that affects many people during the course of their lifetime. It can be brought on by confinement and restrictions like we are experiencing currently or from continued pressure from work or home life.
For most, it is not a serious issue and is something that can be resolved by talking to a friend, family member, or in some cases, a medical professional.
In the UK and Northern Ireland, depression claims the lives of more young people than alcohol or tobacco combined. Younger males are the most susceptible to depression due to their reluctance to open up and talk. Seeking help is often hard for some, if not many, although there are a lot of organizations that offer free and nonjudgmental help.
The potential signs of depression are quite difficult for people to spot, but they can include:
- Change of sleeping habits
- An increase in drug or alcohol use
- Fatigue can also be associated with depression. (Over 80% of depressed people do not realize that this can be a symptom.)
- Becoming reclusive is also very common. A once very sociable person who now prefers to spend time alone can be a sign.
- Easily getting upset and feeling irritable can be a sign of depression.
- A low sex drive can also be an indicator of depression.
There are many causes for the onset of depression and it is truly nothing to be ashamed of.
The ongoing pandemic has changed the world (hopefully temporally). We all have to adapt to the current situation to continue living our lives but, keeping a healthy lifestyle and maintaining a social connection with others is essential to keep depression at bay.
Should you feel depressed or just in need of someone to talk to, please remember that wherever you are, there will be some dedicated professionals who are always willing to listen and help.
Last Updated on January 12, 2021