In the whole world, the public is being informed & known about the physical effects of Covid-19 infections and steps to be taken to prevent vulnerability to the coronavirus and somehow manage the symptoms of COVID‐19 if any of them appear. However, the effects of this disastrous period of Corona on one’s mental health have not been studied at length and are still unknown. As all the efforts are focused on understanding the cleanliness, clinical features, imparting patterns, and management of the COVID‐19 breakout, there has been very little concern expressed over its effects on one’s mental health and on activities to prevent it
s stigmatization. People’s behaviour may greatly affect the intense widespread by improving the seriousness, transferral, disease flow, and its consequences. The present situation requires high awareness in public, which can be helpful to deal with this disaster. This prospective article provides a detailed overview of the effects of the COVID‐19 outbreak on the mental health of people.
As per the Tracking Record by KFH Healthcare conducted from July 2020 to present, it has been found that many adults are complaining about many specific negative impacts on their mental health and well-being, such as difficulty in sleeping (36%) or eating (32%), increases in alcohol consumption or substance use (12%), and worsening chronic conditions (12%), due to worry and stress.
Quarantine and self-isolation for a longer period of time causes a very negative and passive impact on one’s mental health. It is practically seen and felt that the separation from the loved ones, loss of freedom, boredom, and uncertainty can cause a deterioration in an individual’s mental health status. To overcome such conditions, certain measures or steps are required both at the individual and societal levels. Presently, in this pandemic situation and condition everyone whether children, adults, youngsters, elders or any of the people in any of the classes are experiencing a mix of emotions where they have become unsure and indecisive for everything in their lives.
Here is the list of certain common changes in the behavior and lifestyle of children or adults caused by Corona.
- Excessive crying and annoying behavior
- Increased sadness, depression or worry
- Difficulties with concentration and attention
- Changes in, or avoiding, activities that they enjoyed in the past
- Unexpected headaches and pain throughout their bodies
- Changes in eating habits
- Irritating and shouting behavior
- Change in their sleeping and eating habits
- Emotional outbursts
To overcome such unwanted changes in anyone, we have to be prepared ourselves and be positive with any of the conditions to face.
For children, the parents have to remain calm, deal with the situation wisely, and answer all of the child’s questions to the best of their abilities.
Parents can take some time to talk to their children about the COVID‐19 outbreak and share some positive facts, figures, and information.
Parents can help to reassure them that they are safe at home and encourage them to engage in some healthy activities including indoor sports and some physical and mental exercises. Parents can also develop a home schedule that can help their children to keep up with their studies. Parents should show less stress or anxiety at their home as children perceive and feel negative energy from their parents. The involvement of parents in healthy activities with their children can help to reduce stress and anxiety and bring relief to the overall situation.
Elderly people are more prone to the COVID‐19 outbreak due to both clinical and social reasons such as having a weaker immune system or other underlying health conditions and distancing from their families and friends due to their busy schedules. According to medical experts, people aged 60 or above are more likely to get the SARS‐CoV‐2 and can develop a serious and life‐threatening condition even if they are in good health.
Physical isolation at home among family members can put the elderly and disabled person at serious mental health risk. It can cause anxiety, distress, and induce a traumatic situation for them. Elderly people depend on young ones for their daily needs, and self‐isolation can critically damage a family system. The elderly and disabled people living in nursing homes can face extreme mental health issues. However, something as simple as a phone call during the pandemic outbreak can help to console elderly people. COVID‐19 can also result in increased stress, anxiety, and depression among elderly people already dealing with mental health issues.
To avoid and overcome such situations, it is suggested that family members should regularly check on older people living within their homes and at nursing facilities. Younger family members should take some time to talk to older members of the family and become involved in some of their daily routine activities, if possible.
Health workers trying to save lives and protect society may also experience social distancing, changes in the behaviour of family members, and stigmatization for being suspected of carrying COVID‐19. Previously infected individuals and health professionals (dealing pandemic) may develop sadness, anger, or frustration because friends or loved ones may have unfounded fears of contracting the disease from contact with them, even though they have been determined not to be contagious.
However, the current situation requires a clear understanding of the effects of the recent outbreak on the mental health of people of different age groups to prevent and avoid the COVID‐19 pandemic.