These are unprecedented times, with the coronavirus pandemic forcing most governments to put some form or the other of a lockdown in place. With people not allowed to step out of their houses other than for exercise or emergencies, the potential for mental health issues to be exacerbated has gone up exponentially. Further, social distancing measures have meant that many people have not been able to access professional help services, which may lead to worsening of existing conditions.
As this situation stretches on, it is important to take care of one’s mental health, along with physical fitness, and there are some easy ways to do so despite being stuck at home.
Experts have said that one of the easiest ways to keep mental health issues at bay is to get enough sleep. To improve the quality of sleep, it is recommended that phones be kept aside and caffeine not be consumed before sleeping. Other simple measures to improve mental health include setting small goals for each day, especially for those who have been furloughed or are not able to work from home and thus have suddenly got a lot of free time on their hands. Any form of structure or routine during the day will help.
Basic self-care is important, so proper sleep, hydration and healthy eating are all necessary to stop people from stressing out too much. Ensure that there are enough supplies at home, and get someone to drop food off for you if you cannot leave the house. Physical activity has been found to be extremely beneficial in these times and it provides and instant boost to one’s mood, and there are a plethora of home workouts available online for people to get moving. Other easy hacks include taking a shower and getting dressed, and taking some time out to meditate or just sit and take deep breaths to calm yourself, especially as we are bombarded with news every minute.
Another activity which has reduce stress during this time is online gaming. Whether you are an old hand or a newbie (or ‘noob’), online gaming can provide the benefits of communication and collaboration with other people, which are not available at the moment due to lockdown restrictions. Any form of games, whether they be online racing simulators or first-person shooters or even online casinos for real money, can provide shared experiences and a sense of accomplishment, which are extremely important in the current scenario. Online games make for an excellent alternative to streaming or video calls, and it is definitely an option for people to look at while stuck inside.
This is a scary time for everyone, and it is therefore even more important to take care of your health at this time. Practice social distancing as much as possible, and during your time alone, make sure to keep a check on your own mental health and try and engage in activities which keep you calm and help provide some happiness and joy.