Life can be overwhelming due to the natural issues that come up in your day-to-day life. This can end up exacerbated by outside factors, such as the global pandemic that began in early 2020. In fact, there was a 25% increase in anxiety and depression during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Are you experiencing depression after COVID? You are not alone. Below you will find helpful information on how to navigate your feelings and work through any mental health-related issues exacerbated by the global pandemic.
Experiencing Depression After COVID? You Are Not Alone
Countless people across the globe were impacted by the global pandemic. The global pandemic impacted more than just people’s physical health as many people experienced mental health-related issues as well. Research has shown that the impact on mental health was grave as there was an increase in anxiety and depression. Mental health became such an issue as the global pandemic unfolded that the vast majority of countries have implemented mental health and psychological related support in their COVID-19 response plans.
Despite the plans, there are clear gaps in mental health services. Addressing the mental health component of the pandemic is just as important as the physical health component as both are directly related to one another.
Impact of COVID-19 on Mental Health
Research has shown that young people and women are impacted the most by mental health issues related to the global pandemic. This does not mean that all demographics did not see the impact. Only the most impacted proved women and young people. It turned out specifically that young people found themselves at a disproportionate risk of self-harm or suicide-related behaviors.
Women proved more severely impacted than men. And those with pre-existing physical health conditions (asthma, heart disease, or cancer) appeared more likely to develop symptoms of mental health-related issues. Additionally, those with pre-existing mental health issues ended up not disparately impacted by the infection. Still, they proved more likely to be hospitalized, suffer from severe illness, and die compared to those without pre-existing mental health conditions.
Caring for Your Mental Health
Your mental health is an integral part of your overall health. If you are experiencing depression or anxiety, consider a combination of the following ways you can care for your mental health.
Talking to a skilled professional that is also a neutral third party in your life can dramatically improve your mental health. Depression therapy is highly effective in improving symptoms of depression. This is especially true for those who have experienced depression during the global pandemic as unprecedented times can trigger mental health issues. If you are married and want to get treatment with your partner, consider marriage counseling.
In combination with talk therapy, exercise can help ease depression and anxiety. Regular exercise releases endorphins and other natural brain chemicals that can improve your well-being. Try exercising outdoors to get the benefits of serotonin as well. Serotonin can help stabilize your mood. Depending on how active you already are, try to incorporate a minimum of 15 minutes of physical activity into your day. Try and build up to exercising at least 30 minutes a day five days a week for optimal mental and overall health benefits.
Depression and anxiety can be really overwhelming. Getting help and completing your daily tasks can feel like climbing Mount Everest. Be gentle with yourself and start small. Begin by making your first therapy appointment. Incorporate outdoor exercise for at least 15 minutes a day until your first therapy appointment. Talk with your therapist about how to manage your daily life in between appointments. They can help you find effective ways to slowly get back to yourself and your regular daily routine again. As you progress you can implement more challenging tasks into your daily routine.