As you hear the news related to cases of COVID-19, it’s understandable that you might begin to develop stress. The whole process of social distancing and self-isolation is really stressful and mentally exhausting.
Stress management is crucial during these times of covid. When dealing with family members at risk of infection, homeschooling, or adjusting to new kinds of situations, it is natural for stress to pile up and affect you both physically and mentally. This development of stress can lead to other mental health problems as well. It is essential to do what we can to maintain our stress levels and those dear to us during these challenging times.
Effect of Stress on Health
Stress management is essential for maintaining our physical and mental health during covid times. You might find yourself getting more stressed out even when you are trying to keep up with COVID-19 news, and you find yourself thinking about how badly people are suffering because of COVID-19 around the world.
Stress and pressure can help in short-time situations and positively change us. However, extra stress levels or chronic stress can be terrible for your body. It can lead to a massive deterioration in the quality of our everyday lives. When a person is more depressed or anxious, their body will produce more of the stress hormone. This stress hormone will end up reducing our immunity levels and cause inflammation as well.
Groups at Higher Risk of Developing Covid Related Stress
Everyone deals with stress in their manner. However, the way stress affects people can differ according to their situation or circumstances. Groups that might have a higher risk of developing stress and related issues include –
- Teens and children who are forced to stay inside their homes because of the COVID conditions
- People who are already suffering from some mental health condition and use prescribed drugs for their issues.
- Groups already at a higher risk of developing or getting infected by coronavirus due to age or other health conditions.
- Firstline support comprises doctors, nurses, and other medical workers as they directly deal with covid patients.
Management of Stress During This Time
Here are some stress relief tips and ways which you can follow to reduce your stress levels covid times –
- Morning Routines – If you are stuck inside your home because of rising covid cases in your area, creating a morning routine can reduce your stress levels and keep you healthy. Morning routines can make you feel more productive and positive during these times. You can start by waking up at a set time, showering, exercising, meditating, and having a healthy breakfast with your family or friends.
- Limiting social media – When you are constantly checking your feeds, it is very much possible that you encounter negative or bad news on the subject of COVID- 19. This can lead to more negativity and increased stress levels which are not suitable for your overall health. You should check your social media apps about once or twice a day, switch off the daily news alerts, and only look at news provided by trusted media outlets.
- Mediation – Mediation is one of the best things you can do for your body’s stress management. When you meditate, it can help your body activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which works against the fear aspect. With mediation, one can think with a much calmer mind and make much better decisions for their betterment.
- Creativity – If you are stuck inside your home because of covid, using your hands and getting a little bit creative is a great way to erase your boredom and reduce stress levels. If you happen to have supplies of art and craft lying around in your home, it might be time to make use of them and make something special. It does not have to be the best. You can look for inspirations and ideas on apps such as Pinterest.
- Staying Connected – We can cope with all kinds of challenges if we receive support and care from our closest people. If you spend more time with your family and relatives, it can bring a sense of comfortability for you and your family members, which is excellent when the development of stress is quick due to the conditions. Opening up about your thoughts, feelings, or other issues can help you with stressful situations.
- Social Connections – Being socially distanced from people around you because of covid-19 does not mean that you must be disconnected from them. Even a simple text can help you connect with other people. There are many different ways through which people can support each other and stay connected such as –
- Sharing of recipes with family members
- Virtual movie clubs and discussion groups with your friends
- Workout program through video calls
- Online support groups
- Watching movies with friends and family members through various apps.
- Going Outside – Social distancing does not mean that you have to stay your time for 24 hours. You can go for walks and runs whenever possible; they act as a great stress buster for many people. Even sitting in your garden and reading is one of the best ways for stress relief.
- Indulging in activities – Keeping yourself occupied with things such as board games, puzzles, or online classes are the best ways not to overburden yourself with stress and spend time with your family and friends.
Following these steps can help you manage your stress levels during the tough times of covid and those around you suffering from the same conditions, especially children. If these ways are not working out for you and you find yourself more and more stressed out because of depression and anxiety, you should contact your doctor through a call or virtual visit.