Tackling depression during the lockdown
It is easy to let each day go by in a blur and then blend into the next during this lockdown. As stress levels shoot up and coping mechanisms falter, lockdown fatigue can get to you. Fear and anxiety are now a part of our day to to day lives as we prepare to continue a lockdown or restart a new way of work with physical distancing and other safety protocols in place.
For those who are depressed and undergoing treatment or those who think that they may be depressed, here are a few questions that might help you identify whether you able to cope with your feelings:
Are you feeling low or sad for long periods?
Do you feel lethargic or restless or unable to focus from time to time?
Are you able to cope with these issues or does it bother you to such an extent that there are many changes in your day to day life?
Even if you are able to cope with the situation, do you know someone who feels this way and want to help them? Read on.
There are other signs of depression that can even be observed by others around you, such as changes in diet and sleep. Here are a couple of things that you can watch out for:
- Do you feel a dip in your appetite or do you binge eat?
- Are you oversleeping or not getting enough sleep?
Basically, if you are affected by the lockdown any way that interferes with your chores, work, behaviour with others, you may need to get some help for dealing with the situation especially if you live alone.
These times call for all of us to be aware of our mental health. Whether you have been diagnosed with depression or are experiencing symptoms that don’t make you feel like your usual self, if you have people who we trust and who can identify that you may be suffering depression, then it may be time to consult a professional therapist.
How many of us are conscious and aware of what we do every day let alone every hour?
You may need to observe and track what you are doing every hour and not just every day to make sure you are stress-proof during this lockdown. “Even if you are on some kind of treatment for depression observe how you are conducting yourself during the day,” says Beatrice Fernandes, Life Coach and Mind Power Trainer. She recommends that you make it a point to evaluate and study what you do all day long. In additions to signs like overeating or lack of sleep or oversleeping, here are some things that you can observe:
- What time do you wake up?
- When do you go to sleep?
- Do you have a schedule?
- Do you know what you want to achieve at the end of each day?
She adds that if you are aware that something is not okay and not able to do anything about it, then you need to get in touch with somebody you trust. It may be a friend or a family member and where possible contact a therapist.
Another thing she recommends is to try to avoid negative information and discussions that are happening around you related to Covid-19 and news related to the pandemic.
Here are some tips for dealing with social isolation
- Practice self care.
- Ensure you get enough rest.
- Eat properly.
- Eat healthy.
- Avoid unhealthy coping strategies like tobacco, alcohol or other drugs.
- Connect with people socially while maintaining physical distance.
- Get out in nature. (If this is in keeping with the lockdown rules in your area.)
- Stay physically active.
- Stay busy.
- Keep children occupied
With inputs from Beatrice Fernandes, Life Coach and Mind Power Trainer.
Minding our minds during the COVID-19: www.mohfw.gov.in/pdf/MindingourmindsduringCoronaeditedat.pdf
Mental health and psychosocial considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak : www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/mental-health-considerations.pdf