The Covid-19 pandemic can be a very stressful time for many people. Daily life has changed and that can have a significant impact on our mental wellbeing. For individuals who must self-isolate, physically distance or who have been affected by Covid-19, there may be feelings of fear, loneliness, a sense of loss or lack of control and heightened awareness. Everyone reacts to stress and anxiety differently, so try to be patient with yourself and others during this time.
Some helpful tips to reduce stress and anxiety:Get the facts. Seek reputable sources for up to date information about Covid-19. Only take in information that is relevant to you and your family.
Limit time spent watching, listening or reading news about Covid-19. Seek information once or twice a day (eg. morning and night).
Stay connected to friends and family. Connection is important for our mental wellbeing and is great protection against feelings of stress and anxiety. Try connecting through an online app (eg. FaceTime, Google Duo, Skype, etc.) or make a phone call.
Maintain your regular routines as much as possible. Focus on what you can do today and make a list for things that can be done during the week.
Take care of your body. Physical activity is a great way to boost your mood. Enjoy spending time outside or find an online class you can join from home to keep your body moving. Pair this with proper nutrition, plenty of water and adequate sleep to feel your best.
Be mindful. Pay attention to your thoughts, feelings and body sensations. This can help you understand why you may be feeling stressed or anxious. If you are having trouble managing your stress or anxiety, talk to someone you trust, your local healthcare provider or call the Mental Health Helpline at 1-877-303-2642.
Make time for hobbies. Continue to do the things you enjoy or make time to pursue new interests.
Practice healthy coping strategies. Breathing techniques, meditation, or journaling are all examples of effective strategies to reduce stress and anxiety. Find a strategy that works for you and practice it regularly.
Visit www.ahs.ca/helpintoughtimes to learn more ways you can stay healthy during Covid-19.
-Submitted by Alberta Health Services