Practicing social distancing, while the healthy and socially-conscious thing to do, can be stressful for a number of reasons, for all of us. But if you’re a person who experiences chronic pain, or who has mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, or other issues, you may be suffering especially badly. Luckily, there are ways in which you can alleviate your symptoms and help keep your mind (and body) as healthy as possible while practicing social distancing. We’ve outlined a few easy tips for you to try (none of these tips are a replacement for medication, therapy or other medical services, and you should speak to your doctor or health professional if you’re experiencing a crisis or medical problem), that may help alleviate your stress, pain or anxiety.
Photo Credit: Kat Jayne
Yoga and Meditation
Just the simple act of stretching your body, working your muscles and deep breathing can help alleviate so much stress, anxiety and depression. In uncertain times, we’re all wound up, tense and waiting for the next bit of bad news. Taking the time to unwind a bit, unplugging from devices and electronics, and allowing ourselves to be alone and quiet with our thoughts can help our mental health exponentially. You don’t have to be a yoga expert or even regular devotee to reap the benefits; just find a simple, free online tutorial or guide online (or via an app) to follow and get your body moving. Deep breaths, calm demeanor, and purposeful, calm thinking is the key.
It’s tempting to spend lots of time online, scrolling through the endless news cycle, or to binge shows via Netflix and Hulu to pass the time. Nothing wrong with either of those in moderation, but make sure you’re taking time to pursue enriching, fun and engaging hobbies as well. This will enrich both your mind and your soul. Read a really good book, do some gardening, sew masks for the community, take up baking or cooking, or play a board game with the kids. Use this time to do fun things you’ve always wished you had more time for.
Supplements, Herbs and More
A simple supplement with Vitamin C or Vitamin D can go a long way to help your mood and boost your immune system. For those who are especially health conscious, a heartier supplement to provide green benefits or other minerals like magnesium, Omega-3 and others may help alleviate anxiety. For those who are in pain, or are having trouble managing anxious thoughts, an online dispensary can ship products right to your home. A simple gummy melatonin can help you get that much needed sleep.
These are just a few simple ways to try and obtain some peace, pain management and engage in positive, calming hobbies while practicing social distancing. All of these can help manage your mental health better and help you remain calm and positive in this time of uncertainty. But as always, contact your doctor or mental health professional with any serious concerns. Look after yourself!