Around mid-March, we experienced an unprecedented culture shock as schools sent students home, major sports leagues suspended their seasons and many venues shut their doors. These measures undoubtedly helped slow the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus. Now, though, most states have considerably eased these restrictions in response to people who are eager to get back to their pre-pandemic way of life. However, epidemiologists who study the novel coronavirus have warned that there are still far too many unknowns to make it safe to reopen restaurants, gyms, schools and entertainment venues in most places.
As new reported cases of the virus continue to surge across the country, some public health experts are predicting that the arrival of flu season in the fall could lead to the need for another nationwide lockdown. In other words, the need to self-isolate to protect yourself and your community could be your “new normal” for the foreseeable future. If you’re struggling with this idea, how can you come to terms with it?
1. Talk to a Professional Therapist
In response to the pandemic, many mental health professionals – including counselors – have shifted their focus to offer teletherapy. If you find your anxiety reaching new heights, you need reassurance that you’re not alone. A therapist can help you talk through your feelings and provide you with healthy coping strategies to guide you in the uncharted waters of the COVID-19 pandemic. You can find a licensed psychologist who offers therapy via HIPAA-compliant video chat platforms on the Anxiety and Depression Association of America’s website.
2. Keep Yourself Occupied
Because boredom and loneliness often go hand in hand, the pandemic has made entertainment options more essential than ever. Instead of lamenting the fact that you can’t safely go to the theater or your favorite concert venue, look for ways to entertain yourself at home. For example, if you want a sense of camaraderie, you can join an online book club or expand your horizons by taking a class. Use this time to your advantage and see if you can pick up a new skill that will benefit you either personally or professionally.
3. Go Outside
Even if you are self-isolating as a preventive health measure, that doesn’t mean you’re homebound with no end in sight. You can still enjoy warm summer weather and get some vitamin D by doing yardwork, tending to your garden or getting in an outdoor workout. Provided you take the appropriate social distancing precautions when interacting with people outside your household, it’s safe and healthy to spend time in the great outdoors.
Addiction Treatment During COVID-19
Dealing with isolation on top of any anxieties you might feel about the COVID-19 pandemic can feel overwhelming. If you’ve found yourself worrying more about your mental health and substance use in recent months, you’ll be relieved to know that many qualified addiction treatment facilities, such as Vista Taos Renewal Center, remain open and ready to accept new clients. We invite you to learn more by reaching out to us today.