Mental health issues have been on the rise during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Considering how infections the virus is, it’s only natural to feel anxious and overwhelmed at what might become of your health or that of your loved ones. But the last thing you can do is allow yourself to be consumed by the anxiety.
In this post, we’ll outline the top five tips on how to keep anxiety at bay during the COVID-19 outbreak.
1. Know the Red Flags
One way to gain control of your mental health is to identify the specific symptoms which might indicate that you’re approaching a mental breakdown. These symptoms can be physical, mental, emotional, or a combination of all.
For instance, a lack of concentration or poor memory could be indicative of an imminent mental breakdown. Maybe you’re trying to catch up on your favorite Netflix series but just can’t seem to follow the plot. Or, you find yourself constantly drifting away from a conversation. All these are signs of poor concentration that you should strive to address as soon as possible.
Besides mental symptoms, you should also watch out for emotional red flags like prolonged sadness and frustration.
In most cases, both mental and emotional red flags will manifest in physical symptoms like irritability, obsessive-compulsive behavior, elevated heart rate, and high blood pressure.
2. Invest In Anxiolytic Herbs
There are numerous natural remedies that you can use to manage a variety of mental issues like stress, anxiety, and depression. Cannabis is one such remedy.
Also known as marijuana, cannabis relieves anxiety by interacting with the body’s neurotransmitters that increase feelings of happiness, such as serotonin, dopamine, and anandamide.
The best thing about cannabis is that the herb presents significantly lower side effects than most conventional anxiety medications. By purchasing it from Weedsmart, you can treat COVID-19 anxiety without worrying about experiencing severe side effects.
Besides, not all cannabis compounds induce euphoria. If you wish to treat anxiety without getting stoned, you might consider non-psychoactive marijuana extracts like cannabidiol (CBD), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabinol (CBN), etc.
Other herbs that might help improve your mental health during COVID-19 breakout include chamomile, valerian, lavender, ashwagandha, passionflower, to mention but a few.
3. Take a Break from Social Media
Social media is a powerful tool for information. Most COVID-19 information is usually shared on social media platforms before such news can get to the mainstream media.
Unfortunately, social media is less regulated. This means that anyone can post anything and get away with it.
When COVID-19 first broke out, social media was awash with footage of people dropping dead, apparently from the virus. But upon investigation, it emerged that a majority of these cases were unrelated to COVID-19. Instead, the videos were shared by fear and scaremongers.
It’s undeniably true that COVID-19 kills. However, social media shouldn’t be your primary source of information on the situation of the virus.
If you’re looking for credible information on COVID-19, shun the social media for the mainstream media. Better yet, source such information directly from reputable health websites like the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
4. Forge and Maintain Connections
COVID-19 may be a time to cut down on physical interactions. But it’s not a time to stop making connections.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re quarantined or were born an introvert. Networking with your friends and peers can go a long way in helping you avoid a mental breakdown.
If you’re working from home, strive to create healthy working groups through virtual platforms like Zoom and Skype. You don’t necessarily have to discuss work-related matters on these platforms. You can choose other subjects provided that the discussions are engaging enough.
Those who live in suburbia or rural areas can also take advantage of the COVID-situation to connect with local communities. You can participate in community outreach programs or pay a courtesy call to that neighbor with whom you’ve not interacted in months.
The more you make social connections, the easier it will be for you to deal with mental health issues like stress and anxiety.
5. Pursue a Hobby
Another effective way you can avoid a mental breakdown during the COVID-19 outbreak is to pursue your hobby. And if you don’t already have a hobby, this is the time to develop one.
Fortunately, you can participate in plenty of pastimes, including exercise-based hobbies like swimming or running. Exercise triggers the release of endorphins, neurotransmitters associated with feelings of happiness and positivity. Plus, having an exercise routine will help keep your body in shape, which is especially beneficial if you’re working from home or are under lockdown.
Gardening is another great hobby you can pursue to keep COVID-19 mental issues at bay. Whether it’s mowing your lawn, blowing the leaf, or planting flowers in your backyard, gardening can help you spend your time constructively.
Other common hobbies you might consider pursuing include journaling, singing, dancing, taking piano classes, playing board games, etc.
COVID-19-related mental issues are on the rise. Sadly, the situation will only worsen if the virus isn’t tamed. While you cannot avoid experiencing COVID-19 anxiety from time to time, you can prevent the stress from affecting your mental health by implementing the tips we’ve highlighted above.