The Covid-19 pandemic has caused widespread stress. Studies show that stress undermines the immune system, reducing the body’s ability to fight infection.
People under stress can be sad, worried, frustrated, afraid, angry, or numb. They can suffer from depression, anxiety, or other mental health problems. Their sleeping and eating patterns change, having too little or too much. Their behavior also changes, with lower energy and less interest in activities. They can experience fatigue, pain in the head and body, gastric problems, and skin inflammation.
Do not allow stress to further weaken your immune system and make you more vulnerable to the coronavirus. You do not have to suffer from stress. You can instead act against it. Have a plan to do so.
While stress is a natural response to a negative situation like a pandemic, you can learn how to manage it.
Authorities advise that you must stay informed about the current situation through reliable sources. This will ensure that you are not affected by rumors. Reduce your exposure to fake news, especially those that promote panic and hysteria.
Regular exercise relieves stress. It also helps combat sleep problems. Include stretching and deep breathing in your pre-exercise and post-exercise routines. These also help regulate mood.
Another helpful mood regulator is yoga. So is tai chi. You can learn these online.
Do not find comfort in junk food, sugary food, and alcohol. They are not only unhealthy, but they also bring down your mood further. You must have a healthy balanced diet with more vegetables and fresh fruits, and plenty of water.
When you are under stress, find comfort by reaching out to your family and friends online. Make the most of technology to nurture relationships. This is soothing to you and them. Have fun.
Do things you enjoy at home. Pamper yourself with spa-like treatments that you can do yourself. Start a hobby. Explore your passions.
Protect Yourself Against Covid-19
You will have less stress when you know you are protecting yourself properly against Covid-19 infection.
Keep your home clean. Do not allow anyone who is not a household member into your home. Do not allow household members to interact face-to-face with others. If you have a pet, do not allow it to interact with other animals. Sanitize everything you will bring into the house from outside.
Leave the house only for essential trips. Wear a mask whenever you are out. Do not approach crowds. Stay one meter away from others or even farther. Always have alcohol with you to sanitize your hands.
Have a Plan
Preparation lessens stress. Since you must limit your trips outside to buy essentials, make a list of all your needs so that you can get everything in one go. Maximize each trip to include the supermarket, the pharmacy, and any other important errand. Stock up for at least a month’s worth of supplies in case of an unexpected lockdown.
Among the things that cause stress is the question of what will happen if you get infected. Be prepared for that eventuality so that you have less to worry about.
For instance, if you live alone with a pet, assign someone to take care of it if you need to be in the hospital. Arrange for someone to look after your house in case you have a long stay in the hospital.
You can further lessen your worries by making an estate plan. This is not only for the wealthy and includes not only your will.
You can use it to name someone to implement your instructions about health care when you cannot do so. For example, you may be in a coma or under ventilation. You will want to decide ahead on issues like pain management, how many times you will be revived, or whether you wish to be kept alive even in a vegetative state.
You can entrust the same person with your vital personal information to continue paying your bills and attend to other financial issues.
Consult legal experts to ensure that you cover everything you want to cover and that the documents will be valid. You can now do this safely even under pandemic conditions.
Do not give in to fear and panic under the pandemic.
You know you are doing everything possible to avoid Covid-19 infection. You already have a plan. Your directives are all in place.
If the worst happens and you get the virus, you can focus on yourself and on getting well. Having no other burdens on your mind will help with your recuperation.