Anxiety and coronavirus: 5 basic tips to feel better
Several recommendations on how to deal with anxiety in the face of a coronavirus crisis.
Although we may not realize it, our psychological state is always influenced by what is happening around us: emotions do not arise in a vacuum, nor are they born spontaneously in us.
That is why when a radical change occurs in our surroundings, our emotions and psychological dispositions also change, whether we want them to or not. And, of course, the global pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus is a change that has shaken the foundations of our society. As a consequence, this virus has not only had an impact on the economy, politics and even our mobility: it has also had an impact on our minds.
In this article we will take a look at some ideas, tips and recommendations for dealing with the anxiety produced by the coronavirus pandemic.This psychological state is one of the most frequent among those whose lives are limited or even compromised by the risk of COVID-19 (the coronavirus disease) and by the measures that governments are taking to curb it.
Key ideas for coping with coronavirus anxiety.
Faced with the homebound situation that many people are going through because of the coronavirus, it is normal to feel anxious. However, it is not an inevitable problem, because we can take control of the situation so that it does not affect us psychologically in a very negative way. Let's see some advice about this.
1. Do not become obsessed with information
We must be very selective with information: when it comes to health issues, more than ever, quality is more important than quantity. It is necessary to control the desire to know absolutely everything about the virus in order not to enter into a spiral of hypochondria, i.e. constant fear and suspicion of seeing symptoms of the disease all the time.that is to say, constant fear and suspicion of seeing symptoms of the disease all the time.
2. Sleep well and eat well
When we radically change our habits, it is easy to fall into habits that are harmful to our body, such as not getting enough sleep and eating poorly. This generates wear and tear on our body, which in turn predisposes us to suffer from anxiety and low mood.That is why by taking care of these aspects of daily life we will be protecting ourselves against anxiety.
3. Keep the mind active
Just because we cannot move much to avoid the risk of contagion does not mean that our mind must also remain still. In fact, quite the opposite is true.
The reason for this is this: whether we want to or not, In situations where we are forced to give up many of our habits, we are more likely to fall into the trap of psychological ruminationWe fall into the trap of psychological rumination: focusing our attention on distressing thoughts about what is happening or what might happen, and constantly turning those ideas over and over, giving them more and more power.
Since whatever we do, our mind is going to be very active, it is best to make sure that this is something beneficial to us, rather than turning into obsessions. Therefore, to keep anxiety at bay, it is advisable to to immerse ourselves in tasks that absorb our attention, that we find stimulating and that have the capacity to interest us. and have the capacity to interest us: reading a book that we have pending, drawing, dancing, etc.
4. Set schedules
Procrastination, or the tendency to leave everything for later, is a phenomenon to which we are more exposed when we spend a lot of time at home. leads us to live in a disorganized way and exposed to anxiogenic situations.For example, this is what happens when we have spent a long time watching videos on the Internet and when the evening comes we realize that we have barely studied for an exam.
For this, it is important to it is important to structure the day to day and set schedules that act as time references.. If necessary, we can also use alarms and reminders.
5. If necessary, online therapy
Sometimes it is necessary to have professional help. Fortunately, even in situations where it is necessary to stay at home to avoid contagion, it is possible to attend psychological consultations through online therapy. We mental health professionals are trained to attend through video call sessions in which it is possible to obtain all the benefits of face-to-face psychotherapy.Although in this case at a distance and through the Internet: the only fundamental difference is the communication channel.
Our psychotherapy center, El Prado Psicólogos, offers online therapy to all types of patients; we will be happy to help you to treat anxiety due to confinement or any other form of psychological discomfort that affects you: depression, relationship problems, low self-esteem, impulsivity, etc.
With the spread of the coronavirus comes the need to adapt to a problem that is economic and health, but also psychological.
Therefore, there are many recommended habits that you can put into practice on a daily basis to protect yourself from the anguish and thoughts that generate anxiety, and also, even if they are not enough to maintain emotional harmony, you can always resort to online therapy. No podemos hacer desaparecer el virus, pero sí podemos hacer mucho a la hora de velar por nuestro bienestar psicológico: aprovechémoslo.
- Stephan WG, Stephan CW (1985). Intergroup Anxiety. Journal of Social Issues.
- Nestadt, G.; Samuels, J.; Riddle, M.A.; Liang, K.I. et.al. (2001). The relationship between obsessive–compulsive disorder and anxiety and affective disorders: results from the Johns Hopkins OCD Family Study. Psychological Medicine 31.
- Warwick, H. M. C. (1989). A cognitive-Behavioural Approach to Hypochondriasis and Health Anxiety. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 33 (6), 705-711.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)