How are your coping mechanisms doing with all of this added pressure? I imagine they are stretched pretty thin.
I’ve seen many articles trying to pinpoint what the most terrifying part of this pandemic is: the isolation, the uncertainty, the shortages, the misinformation, the helplessness, the dramatic responses from employers and others in power.
The best thing I can do now to quell my own pulsing insecurities is to focus on facts. The CDC, WHO, and FEMA seem to have that covered on COVID-19, along with other organizations doing exhaustive work to keep us informed and as safe as possible. Instead of the physical disease, then, I want to focus on another invisible menace: mental illness.
Here are some resources to keep you informed and possibly alleviate some stress from this global nightmare. I have included sources outside of the United States because in this era of sickness, there seem to be less emphasis on country borders and more emphasis on individual borders.
- This pdf is the Australian government’s guide to self-isolating. It includes tips on how to manage isolation. https://www.health.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/2020/03/coronavirus-covid-19-isolation-guidance_7.pdf
- This is another Australian resource, detailing how isolation and loneliness can affect your mental health, as well as tips to combat those harmful effects. https://www.lifeline.org.au/get-help/topics/loneliness-isolation
- This is an article from the United Kingdom on how to protect your mental health during isolation caused by the pandemic. https://youngminds.org.uk/blog/looking-after-your-mental-health-while-self-isolating/
- This is an article about “The association between social network factors and mental health at different life stages.” http://ezjtcc.vccs.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=115900109&site=ehost-live&scope=site
- This is an article about “Social isolation in mental health.” http://ezjtcc.vccs.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=126407194&site=ehost-live&scope=site
- This is an article about “Solitary Time and Mental Health in the Netherlands.” http://ezjtcc.vccs.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=98625791&site=ehost-live&scope=site
But that is mostly focusing on isolation, in light of the quarantine that is in place in most places. Here are some more general mental health resources for when you or a loved one needs them. The following information is taken from the Mental Health LibGuide:
You can find information on mental health disorders through the World Health Organization’s fact sheet.
There is also a wealth of information available on the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website.
Safe Work Australia has an infographic about work-related mental health disorders.
You can find information on depression through the World Health Organization’s fact sheet.
Stay safe, comrades. We have a ways to go, but we can do this together.