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Pandemic Stress: How to Detect It and Cope with It

4 Mins read

By now, we are all caught up with the pandemic situation, affecting the whole world. It started last year in the Chinese province of Wuhan and quickly spread throughout the world.

We are talking about the Coronavirus pandemic. So far, this virus has infected almost 26 million people worldwide and killed about 850 thousand of the global population. The reality though is different- as many more fell victim to the virus than those affected directly.

Billions of people are still under an economic lockdown, which is clearly destroying their day-to-day life. People who have perished or are suffering from COVID-19, the disease perpetrated by a coronavirus, have a lot of people depending on them, who are going through immeasurable pain.

All in all, the psychological trauma from this pandemic is too great to ignore. Research is being done to understand the psychological effects the virus itself may have on people. In this article, we are trying to discover the reasons behind psychological stress in this pandemic and how you may cope with them. 

What is the COVID-19 pandemic?

Understanding this virus and its features is fundamental, towards understanding this pandemic. After appearing in China, this virus quickly spread through 193 countries. 

The main reason for such a quick spread was the easy transfer system. The virus comes out of a host body, via nasal droplets or mucus. These mediums allow the virus to become airborne for a short distance. So it can spread without close contact.

It can survive on surfaces such as skin, paper, and metal, for a long time. So it can spread from shaking hands to simply touching a surface, which is why the social distancing measures were necessary to stop the spread of this virus. 

As a result, government-mandated lockdowns were imposed to stop people from mixing with each other. But this also meant shutdown of public places and businesses. It suddenly stopped social gatherings and events. 

Lack of information was the largest obstacle, in the early days. As this virus appeared out of nowhere, at the early stage, no information was available about its nature. 

Confusions regarding the symptoms of the virus, were the first to emerge. Many people were facing different types of symptoms of the virus. At the most serious stage, the patient had lung failure and died of oxygen deprivation

Before this stage, most of the people faced fevers and shortness of breath. Before this stage, many people showed various symptoms. Some reported dry cough; others reported fatigue, sore throat, and nasal congestion. Some studies even found people suffering from conjunctivitis due to this virus. There was a clear confusion about how the virus would manifest itself. 

Then there was confusion about asymptotic patients. The patients that show no symptoms still carry the virus. There was a confusion about how long it takes to show the symptoms as there was varying information about how long it was taking for different people.

How it affected our mental health?

The early effects were pure confusion and panic. Lots of misinformation spread about the virus on the internet about its death rate and how it affects people and how it spreads, but mostly about its cure.

The misinformation created panic and confusion, which led to people hoarding supplies and market shortages. When the clouds of confusion started to disperse slowly and more information started coming, it started to have big effects on us.

Firstly, the virus directly affected the mental health of the patients by affecting the oxygen flow to the brain. Patients that survived the virus, later on, had difficulties remembering things and other psychological symptoms. 

Then there was the trauma from the suffering. The experience can be horrible as it causes pain throughout the body. Various organs start to fail, and diarrhea causes patients to lose control over their metabolism. All these situations stress the patient severely. The survivors showed symptoms that likened the PTSD. experiences of soldiers after the war. 

Then comes the social cost of the virus. It directly affects those close to the patient. As this virus spreads through physical contact, the patient needs to be completely quarantined and hospitalized in case of a serious situation. During this whole period, the family members and close people cannot contact the patient without proper protection, and this isolation affects both the patient and their family, creating stress. 

This long isolation clearly has some effects on our minds. The lockdown is causing severe stress for those people who are being directly affected, such as the business owners that had to close down. Uncertainty about the future had them stressed out to the edge.

Health workers and essential workers also had to go through the trauma of separation from their families. Many people suffering from OCD had to go through tough times due to the uncertain contamination nature of the virus. 

Coping with the situation

Such traumatic experiences could affect our mental health differently. At any level of mental stress, the first course of action is to get yourself diagnosed via a mental health professional and follow their advice. As it is a case-sensitive situation, different steps taken will have different outcomes.

In case you are certain about your psychological situation or decide not to get a psychological evaluation, you can try some home remedies. Eating healthy and enough sleep at night is a prerequisite for any type of psychological therapy. 

For cases such as this, we’d recommend going a bit overboard and try cannabis solutions. Many people still have peeves about this, even though the substance is being legalized in many parts of the world. But in this type of situation, cannabinoids could really help manage the stress we are going through.

Cannabis directly affects our body’s internal endocannabinoid system(ECS), which is responsible for physiological processes, such as pain-sensation, appetite, sleep, mood, memory, cardiovascular, and reproductive system function, and immune system responses.

Of course, different people react to cannabis differently, but in most cases, it can work as relief from excessive stress, as it has been used for ages. Check out hemp flowers for sale for a pure source of cannabis.

This pandemic is a big psychological test for us. Right now all we can do is- control our desire to go outside and meet friends and family. Otherwise, the situation could turn for worse anytime. Stay home, stay safe.