Ways to safeguard your mental health during the coronavirus pandemic

As the coronavirus is spreading at a rapid pace, it has been affecting several people both physically and mentally. Most peole are worried about the uncertain future, and are concerned about the health condition of their family and freinds. This pandemic is creating a stressful situation for everyone around the globe. There are several reports of people suffering from mental issues during this uncertain time. However, if  these conditions are not addressed in a timely manner then they might cause serious damage to an individual's mental state of mind.  

While it is good to stay informed about the current situation, it is also essential to manage your mental wellbeing. 

Here are some tips which will help you to cope with your mental state of mind-

1. Take time to relax and meditate- One of the effective ways to combat stress is to meditate. All you have to do is close your eyes  and connect with your inner soul. Meditation not only increases calmness, but also enhances your overall wellbeing. Connecting with your inner soul helps in developing a positive state of mind. Several studies have shown that meditation might ease symptoms of depression and anxiety. 

2. Do things you enjoy the most- Whether it might be baking, reading or solving puzzles, utilise this time to do activities that you like the most. Engaging in activities that distract you from the current situation is an effective way to cope with mental conditions. Developing this healthy habit not only sharpens your mind but also keeps you happy. 

3. Manage the kind of information you intake- One of the major reasons behind people getting stressed out about this current situation is the kind of information they read on social media and news. Constantly checking your instagram and facebook newsfeed for information on the coronavirus outbreak  can make you more anxious. Try to limit the amount of time you spend on watching videos and articles that are being circulated about the coronavirus. Only read the facts.

4. Sleep on time- Just like how healthy diet, drinking water and breathing is essential for staying fit and in good shape, getting proper sleep is also vital. Research shows that mental conditions like depression and anxiety are associated with poor sleeping habits. Most healthy adults need atleast 7 to 8 hours of sleep. Maintaining a routine in your sleeping pattern helps to ensure your sleeping well. Just before going to bed, do meditation and create a restful environment. Also refrain from reading the news and checking your social media accounts, as this may disrupt your sleep pattern. 

5. Eat nutritious food- Along with proper sleep, your body needs healthy food. Increase your intake of foods rich in Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Zinc, and also drink plenty of water or eat foods high in water content. You must increase the intake of foods that boost your immune system. Some of the these foods are:  broccoli, garlic, spinach, lemon, kiwi, yogurt, cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, nuts, eggs, fish, cheese etc.

6. Indulge in any form of physical workout- Not just eating the right food,  but do not forget the fact that your body needs exercise to  develop a stronger immune system to fight against the virus. Everyday spend some time to do physical workouts like walking, yoga, cardio, and some breathing exercises. Exercise is very essentail for both the physcial and mental wellbeing. Extensive research has shown that physical workout helps in reducing anxiety and improves your mood. 

7. Stick to your regular routine- Changing your routine during these difficult times is not the right thing to do as it may disrupt your mental balance. It is important to stick to your regular routine, maintain a consistent time for activities like eating, sleeping, bathing, and work or study schedules. Along with maintaining a daily routine, set some time to indulge in activities that you enjoy doing. Adapting to your regular routine will help in coping with change and also reduces stress levels.  

-Akhila kakarala 

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