by: Curswell Tshihwela
The Covid-19 pandemic brought a lot of uncertainty to the majority, as it was ripping off what most depend on. Various industries got affected negatively which result in less profit generated. Most industries had to shut down in fear or to prevent exposure to the virus. Some lost their loved one’s, jobs, assets and some valuable goods. Many people even those who were not infected by the virus decided to quarantine in their home for safety measures. Capsizing travel plans, indefinite isolation, panic over scarce resources and information overload that could have been a recipe for unchecked anxiety and feelings of isolation.
Unemployment rate increases drastically during this pandemic period across the globe. The stress of social isolation, the worry about jobs, money, and health, and the profound feelings of loss that many are experiencing at the moment could trigger depression for the first time or exacerbate symptoms if one already been diagnosed. When you’re suffering from depression, life can seem overwhelmingly bleak and hopeless. It does interfere with your ability to think straight, drain your energy, and make it difficult to get through the day. Even as some countries and regions begin to ease stay-at-home restrictions, working restrictions, it seems unlikely that life will fully return to normal any time soon.
Even as some places start to open up again after months of lockdown, the end may still seem a long way off. You may have lost your job, be struggling financially, and worried about if and when the economy will pick up. You could be grieving the loss of loved ones or the life you knew before the pandemic, or feeling frustrated and cut off by continued social distancing. Living in the age of coronavirus can have a profound effect on your mood.
Some of the influences that fuel anxiety and depression:
- Isolation and loneliness fuels depression. Human beings are social creatures. Being cut off from the love, support, and close contact of family and friends can trigger depression or make existing symptoms worse. Months of social distancing and sheltering at home have left many feeling isolated and lonely, having to face their problems alone.
- A troubled or barley surviving relationship maybe even worse than loneliness. While strong and supportive relationships are crucial for your mental wellbeing, being forced to spend months quarantined in a troubled, unhappy, or abusive relationship can be even more damaging to your mood than being alone.
- Anxiety can lead to depression. All the fear and uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 means it’s natural to worry. When your worries spiral out of control, though, they can cause panic and anxiety. Since anxiety and depression are believed to stem from the same biological vulnerability, one can often lead to the other.
- Stress levels are soaring. Experiencing a major change in your life, such the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, being diagnosed with a serious illness, or financial or relationship difficulties, can bring overwhelming levels of stress. As a result of this pandemic, some may be experiencing several of these major stressors at once, making them more vulnerable to depression.
- We’re turning to unhealthy ways of coping. The boredom, loneliness and stress of being in lockdown, struggling financially, or having to juggle a job and home school your kids, can prompt unhealthy ways of coping. Maybe you’re drinking too much, abusing drugs, or overeating junk food in an attempt to self-medicate your mood and deal with stress.
There’s no easy fix or procedure for recovering from depression and finding the energy and motivation to take the first step. But you have more control over your mood than you may realize. It’s true that yes these are painful and worrying times, and few people have much to be cheerful about at the moment. But at the same time, depression can make things seem even worse than they really are. When you’re depressed, everything is filtered through a lens of negativity. By simply recognizing that you can start to change your focus and take the first step to feel more hopeful and confident about the future.
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