Mental Health & COVID-19
Caring for your mental health during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is a high priority. With COVID-19 keeping many people confined to their homes, concerns and worries about an impact on mental health have arisen.
The global pandemic brings a high degree of uncertainty, and feeling a loss of control is common. Setting a self-care goal can help to keep you grounded and focused on the things in your life that you can control. It also helps to focus on staying positive and keeping yourself busy in a way that allows you to look after yourself.
Here are some of our simple tips to ensure your self-care remains adequate to help you get through this time.
Establish a routine
As best you can keep a regular routine, for example:
- Wake up and go to bed at the same time each day
- Make your bed before you start the day
- Take an afternoon tea break
- Reach out to a friend for a chat each day
- If working from home, try to maintain a healthy balance between your work and personal life by taking regular breaks and establishing a dedicated workspace.
Nobody can function properly without adequate sleep. Sleep helps our bodies and mind to repair and restore, so make sure you rest up and get sufficient sleep.
Along with keeping active and sleeping well, eating well can make a difference to the way you feel, and can impact your mental health. Make sure that your diet remains healthy by striving to follow the 2 & 5 healthy eating principle.
Physical health is key to keeping you mentally healthy. Physical activity can help to improve your mood and reduce stress. Depending upon your location and the lockdown restrictions that apply, you might be able to get out of the house to exercise once a day. Also look to make use of outside space that you might have to work with, as fresh air and exercise are great for clearing your head and keeping you in shape.
Social connection is now more critical than ever before. Luckily, there are many options to help you keep in touch with friends and family even if you can’t see them in person. You can use phone calls, messages, teleconferences, and video chat to check in with each other and stay connected. Remember to find a way to connect with older adults and anyone you know that may be feeling socially isolated during this time.
It is important to get accurate information from credible sources, such as the Australian Government Corona Virus (COVID-19) Health Alert, World Health Organisation and Smartraveller.gov.au. However, you should try and limit your daily media intake as exposure to large volumes of negative information can heighten feelings of anxiety.
Turn to your GP
GPs are a fantastic source of information and support when it comes to your mental and physical health. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed or stressed during these challenging times. However, if you feel as though the stress or anxiety is impacting too much on your daily life, you’re simply not coping at all, or you’re are aware of somebody who needs additional support, speak with a GP. They can provide additional support with mental health care plans, and referrals to allied health professionals such as psychologists if necessary.
If you need immediate help, please visit the Health Direct website for a list of 24/7 Mental Health Helplines. If it’s an emergency, dial 000.
To book an appointment with a GP, please contact your nearest Guardian Medical Centre.