Keeping mental health front of mind during a pandemic

Keeping mental health front of mind during a pandemic

How are you doing during these unprecedented times? Be honest. How are you handling the stressors involved with the COVID-19 pandemic?

It’s no lie coronavirus has changed the course of all of our lives and has left no life untouched. Maybe you’re an essential worker putting in overtime. Maybe you’re working from home or have been laid off and forced to seek unemployment. You might have had to juggle home schooling your children for the first time or helping a high-risk family member access daily needs. Maybe you’ve had to stay at home, take your temperature every day, social distance, and wear a mask. The reality is, the pandemic has disrupted your “normal.”

Though everyone is dealing with the virus and changes from the virus in their own way, it’s important to stop and take an inventory of your feelings. Are you scared? Are you angry? Are you depressed? Are you suffering from anxiety or confusion? Is it all the of the above?

white guy with beard smiling with "be happy" sticky note stuck to his forehead - mental health awareness

Take back control

Taking a mental note of your feelings and not allowing the fear or uncertainty to overwhelm you is a key way to take back some control when the world feels so chaotic.

Public health recommendations including social distancing can make many feel isolated, even though they are super important in stopping the spread of the virus. If you find yourself feeling especially stressed, anxious or having trouble coping with the effects of COVID-19, there are many resources you can turn to.

Here a few ways to combat those feelings:

  • Find a hobby that brings you joy. If you can keep yourself busy while still practicing social distancing, you can turn that negative energy into positive and productive output.
  • Lean on those closest to you. While you might not be able to physically get together with a lot of your friends, you can still connect with them on social media or through video chat platforms like Zoom or FaceTime. A simple telephone call is still a great way to connect.
  • Make a point to spend time with your family. Whether it’s starting a new family tradition of movies and popcorn or breaking out those old board games and sitting around the table, make the most of your time together.
  • Meditate or pray. It’s important to take some quiet time to yourself and reflect on what’s going on, sort through your feelings about it and purge those emotions. Start a journal, a Bible study or take a moment of meditation to center yourself and unwind from the craziness of this world.
  • Get out and exercise. Staying cooped up is a surefire way to get cabin fever. Get out and explore your community with your family. Go on walks, exercise outside or enjoy a local park. Be sure to maintain social distance.
woman holding hands in group of people - mental health awareness

We’re here for you

No matter what the future holds or the amount of time it might take the world to get back to “normal,” Newton Medical Center has your back. With our NMC Safe Care Commitment, we will continue bringing you excellent care from trusted providers and a safe environment for our patients, your families and our community.

If you need additional help, it’s perfectly normal. Schedule an appointment with your doctor. If you think you or a loved one is in a mental health crisis, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1-800-273-TALK, the Disaster Distress Hotline at 1- 800-985-5990 or 911.

We’re in this together. Your health is our focus.