Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on Mental Health
Novel SARS-Corona virus has ravaged a disaster in the world. Covid-19 pandemic has affected about 15.7 million people worldwide to date. The United States of America, Brazil, and India lies at the top in the list as the most affected countries. As soon as the World Health Organization declared it a Global Pandemic in March 2019, all the countries moved towards strict lockdown as the foremost preventive measure. Health authorities also asked people to maintain self-isolation to minimize the spread of infection. But despite all these measures on the cost of peoples’ mental health, the deadly virus spread its tentacles. Even health authorities are now warning that the worst is yet to come. Therefore, we are going to describe the impact of covid-19 pandemic on mental health.
After reading this article, you will come to know;
1- What is the impact of covid-19 pandemic on mental health?
2- What are the contributing factors that lead to mental health problems?
3- How can we avoid them to save ourselves?
Contributing factors toward mental issues
1- The looming danger of economic recession and mental health
In the current scenario of economic conditions in the world, experts are forecasting a global economic recession that is characterized by high inflation, poverty, and high unemployment rate. Fear of losing jobs as millions have already lost is one of the biggest contributors to poor mental health. People who lose jobs are at higher risk of mental issues and this kind of situation not only affects those people but also creates distress among others who are pursuing their jobs.
In a country like Pakistan, where about 12 million people are already living below the poverty line, the pandemic has aggravated the situation. Although the government has taken wise steps by avoiding complete lockdown. But corona has changed the already maintained global system. It has changed the nature, requirements, and number of jobs. In the new ecosystem, who will get the cake and who will lose the battle is the cause of great discomfort that affects mental health.
2- Fear of hunger contributes to mental health
In the world with a capitalized dominant system, there has always been an imbalanced division of food commodities and wealth. Some countries have surplus resources and some countries are facing a severe crisis. Corona pandemic has worsened the already grave situation. The monster of hunger has surfaced its head with more power than ever. According to Oxfam Internation, an organization of 20 NGOs with partners in almost 90 countries; 12000 people per day can die of hunger by the end of this year. Oxfam has also released a list of countries that are most affected by the food crisis. Fear of starvation badly affects mental health. It leads to stress and anxiety.
3- Fear of infecting with covid-19 and mental health
The health authorities have inflicted strict health precautions and measures. Taking ultra care of health, washing hands frequently, wearing masks, and maintaining safe social distance are also contributing. Humans accept changes, adjust themselves with the situation but it takes time. All measures related to precautions of covid-19 are quite strange and new for humans to accept them abruptly. For example, people in one of the USA states protested against wearing masks and considered it against personal freedom. Adding to it is the fear of infecting with coronavirus that is airborne. Walking outside with the fear of catching the virus and the possibility of death in case of severity of infection affects mental health.
4- Social distancing and self-isolation during pandemic
Positive interaction with friends and family poses a good impact on mental health. It helps humans to share their problems with each other. This interaction helps humans to escape depression and anxiety disorders. But pandemic has hindered people from social gatherings and inflicted the situation of self-isolation. In a situation of a pandemic, when everyone is already going through a sort of mental problem, it is vital to maintain good family relations for better mental health. Naturally, humans need physical and emotional support in the need of an hour.
Although social media apps like Whatsapp, Zoom, and others are introducing the newest features to take people closer in the time of social distancing but the digital world can never replace the importance of humans. The need for humans has always been evident in any grave situation.
5- Effect on the mental health of infected people
Experts in the world are conducting surveys and researches to find the relation of getting sick with corona and mental health. People recovered from corona may experience. PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder), that may occur after being recovered from any type of infection or disease. But there is no clear evidence of PTSD in researchers conducted so far.
How can we avoid mental issues during the pandemic?
A positive attitude and thinking in any situation is the key to good mental health. One must think that it is life and anything can happen anytime. Air can change its direction anytime and perhaps this is the biggest reality of life that saves us from being frightened of uncertain outcomes. Therefore, we must keep ourselves prepared to counter any difficult situation. Let us have a look at how can we save ourselves from the effects of the pandemic.
- Try to make yourself used to the novel situation of the pandemic and stay relaxed. Even if you get the infection, stay positive. Assure yourself that 97 percent of people recover from it.
- Try to find alternatives to jobs with your skill sets. Polish your existing skills and cope up with new skills that are trending in the market.
- Always believe in the Almighty. He is always with you, protecting you, guarding you, and helping you. He never leaves you alone. Develop a strong connection with Allah.
- Try to maintain good relations with your beloved ones. Be kind to everyone. Make life easy for others and it will come to you.
- Share your problems with the people you trust. Seek their suggestions.
- If you feel that you are developing mental issues, try to find a life coach and discuss it with him. Life coaches are veterans in their fields and their exposure to different life circumstance of many people make them more aware of the needs of a particular situation.
- At the last, believe in yourself and be positive in any situation. You can do whatever you want.
In this article, we have discussed the impact of covid-19 pandemic on mental health and its contributing factors. The rate of mental disorders in the world is increasing and poor health conditions are deteriorating with time. There is only one solution in this critical time that is a positive attitude towards life. Stay away from negative people and negative thoughts. Believe in yourself that you can defeat the situation and come out as a winning soldier of life. Stay positive and take care of the people around you.