There is no denying that Pandemic Depression is a very real thing and it is hitting all of us hard. One study showed a 30% jump in depression in the United States in 2020, and it’s all thanks to the pandemic. But what is Pandemic Depression and how do you fight it? I’ll cover that and more below.
What is Pandemic Depression?
Pandemic Depression is, exactly what it says in the name, a depression that is brought on because of a pandemic. It is hitting younger people hardest as they are forced to adjust to a life of isolation. Studies also appear to be suggesting that young women are hit harder than young men. There is also a lot of anxiety about the pandemic which contributes to the rise in depression.
How do I Know if I Have Pandemic Depression?
Are you finding it difficult to sleep? Worrying more than usual? Or having trouble concentrating? Do the things that once gave you joy sound completely unappealing now? These are all signs of depression.
If these symptoms have been going on for weeks or even months, it is time to seek help. Or if your symptoms are making day to day life like school, work, relationships, and even food difficult, it is time to seek help. If your symptoms are getting worse, you can’t face getting out of bed or even brushing your teeth in the morning…then it is time to seek help.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to a professional if you need help. Even during a pandemic. There are online therapists who can help even if you can’t go see one in person.
But, maybe things aren’t that bad for you yet. Maybe, you aren’t ready to get help yet. There are a few things you can do to help manage your mental health right now.
Get Some Sleep – Limit your caffeine and your alcohol, start drinking night time tea blends before bed. Do whatever it takes to get yourself a good night’s sleep.
Practice Gratitude – Write down at least one thing you are grateful for every day.
Stay Connected – I know at this point we’re totally over Zoom meetups, but they were actually doing a lot for our mental health! Reach out to your friends to start scheduling Zoom meetups again. Be honest about why, chances are pretty good they’re feeling the same way.
Force Yourself to do Something You Know You Love – When people get depressed they stop doing the things they love, the things that are helping them stay happy and sane. Like those Zoom meetups. Force yourself to do it even if you don’t feel like it. Once you get started you’ll feel better for having done it.
Make a Routine and Stick To It – Studies have shown that during times of distress, like in a pandemic, having a schedule to your day helps you cope better. If you know that lunch is 12 every day then for the hours leading up to lunch you will have something to look forward to. Something to keep you grounded.
Find what works for you to get the help you need. Don’t let depression steal your joy, peace, or life.