Coronavirus and Mental Health

Coronavirus, as everybody knows, is spreading all over the world and people are getting more anxious as the measures to protect against it escalate and become stricter.

Being serious and concerned is different from anxiety and panic.

There are two types of anxiety which can occur:

  1. Health anxiety: with worries and ‘what-ifs’ about our general health which consume time and attention. It will move into vicious circle and become more distressing.
  2. Anxiety of the unknown: because it is a new strain of virus - that is why misinformation and personal views, especially on social media, might contribute to more confusion and fear.

In order to combat anxiety and fear we need to take action to reduce it as much as possible, and also to reduce the possibility of catching the disease:

  1. Stay at home unless completely necessary to go out.
  2. Communicate and reduce boredom by engaging in healthy activities you enjoy and maintain physical activity inside the home.
  3. Prevent loneliness by connecting with relatives and friends by using videoconferencing and mobile technologies.
  4. Avoid fear-based speculation.
  5. Stay informed – check reliable sources and limit media exposure by seeking information updates at specific times during the day (once or twice).
  6. Let your own knowledge override the rumours you hear.
  7. Wash your hands often. Keep surfaces clean. Stay away from crowds. Drink plenty of water and eat nutritious foods to boost your immune system.
  8. For children: be aware of what kids are watching. Answer their questions and provide reassurance.

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