The Mental Health Charities Chronicles
Mental health charities Interrupted treatments, increased anxiety, and forced isolation can cause lasting harm, especially to those with pre-existing mental illness. However, for others, not having to face the “outside” can be a relief.
The battle to stop the coronavirus pandemic, waged with social distancing and forced isolation, is taking a psychological toll that some specialists warn could spark another crisis, one of mental health.
The coronavirus pandemic has not only threatened the physical health of millions, but has also wreaked havoc on the emotional and mental well-being of people around the world. Feelings of anxiety, helplessness, and pain are increasing as people face an increasingly uncertain future, and almost everyone has been affected by the loss.
The coronavirus has plunged the world into uncertainty, and the constant news about the pandemic may seem relentless. All of this is affecting people’s mental health, regardless of whether they have a diagnosed mental illness.
“In practice, it is observed that those people who suffered from certain social anxiety disorders before the outbreak, who had a greater component of stress than going out daily (to work, for example) and who did so at the expense of a lot of discomfort, this situation that theoretically would have to affect them much more, on the contrary, it relaxes them “, explained in a dialogue with this medium Dr. Liliana V. Moneta, child and youth psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, honorary president of the Child and Youth Psychiatry Chapter of the Association of Argentine Psychiatrists.
The True Story About Mental Health Charities That The Experts Don’t Want You To Know
For the specialist, it is a superego laxity, with which they manage to overcome their inhibitions. “Something like that to perform their routine tasks abroad they must arm themselves with obsessive defenses so that they can overcome their inhibitions. Of course, by reducing that “must be” they relax and are “at ease” and that is why it does not affect them as much. On the other hand, for those who build most of their daily scaffolding abroad, this affects them, “said the specialist.
However, a recent review by the medical journal of studies The Lancet on the psychological impact during the SARS and Ebola outbreaks showed that quarantine can trigger problems such as emotional disturbances, depression, irritability, insomnia, post-traumatic stress symptoms, confusion and anger . Some of the studies suggested lasting effects.
A survey of 52,730 people from China, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, conducted by psychiatrists at the Shanghai Mental Health Center between January 31 and February 10, on how the population faced during the COVID-19 outbreak found that almost 35% of respondents experienced psychological distress.
“Sometimes the analogy is made with war. The difference from wartime is that people can still come together as communities and bond, “said Dougal Sutherland, a clinical psychologist at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, who began four weeks of national self-isolation on March 25.
The coronavirus has transformed everything we thought we knew about our daily lives and our health into a kind of strange world where FaceTime dating and panic-based shopping are the new norm. Surveys show that people feel their mental health is getting worse, and governments and charities are inventing new ways to try to limit psychological harm.
Even so, for Agustina Fernández, psychoanalyst, member of the Argentine Psychoanalytic Association, staying at home forced by quarantine is not lived by everyone in the same way. “The personality characteristics of each one influence the way of coping with it, even of suffering it.
There are those for whom the threat of the virus activates their own persecutory traits and leads them to take extreme security measures that become great daily obsessive rituals. Others, with more phobic features, feel more comfortable and safe staying at home, without being forced to interact too much, they carry little contact better. And those who lead an intense social world, enjoy outings and encounters with others, suffer from this limitation with greater intensity, ”he said in a dialogue with Infobae.
For some of the millions of people with post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, or other forms of anxiety, coronavirus is a growing threat to mental health. Hypochondria or disease anxiety disorder is a psychiatric condition in which a person is extremely anxious to have or develop a disease. Your anxiety may increase to the point that it affects daily life and relationships.
“People with previous social anxiety conditions suffer less because they are not exposed to social exchange, and that alleviates them but they suffer for other reasons: uncertainty and fear of getting sick and / or dying,” said Elsa Wolfberg, psychoanalyst and psychiatrist at the APA.
Hypochondriacs generally have one of two instinctive reactions: completely block thinking, reinforcing their imagined severity, or become obsessed with fear and start investigating the virus and all its symptoms.
Another very frequent compulsion is the search for tranquility. Listen to the news and talk to everyone. However, any relief is very brief because even if they calm down, it is only until they ask the next question, “But what if?”
A person with health anxiety will perceive the guidelines of the health experts as insufficient. And instead of washing their hands for 20 seconds, they might do it for a minute. They may use hand sanitizer right after rinsing. It is a slippery slope that leads to an endless series of compulsions and will simply maintain anxiety.
Psychologically, this is our September 11th, ”said Emilio Del Bono, mayor of Brescia, a city in northern Italy at the heart of the European outbreak. “In our individual and collective memories, this disease has distanced us from our loved ones and has deeply marked our psyches.” Del Bono said the number of psychological victims in the city’s population has been almost as bad as the large number of deaths, which exceed 1,000, including himself.
In the United States, Crisis Text Line, a nonprofit that offers free support via text messages, has seen a 40% increase in traffic in the past four weeks in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. . About 78% of conversations that mention “viruses” are about anxiety, including getting sick, feeling lonely, or worrying about financial difficulties as a result of this pandemic, according to CEO and founder Nancy Lublin.
Beyond acute stress and anxiety, psychologists say confinement is starting to trigger deeper problems, including depression and compulsive disorders, which can be even more difficult for people with pre-existing mental health conditions. Calls for more hygiene can accentuate obsessive-compulsive disorders, someone suffering from depression could worsen further in the absence of routines, and an alcoholic could go back to drinking without physical support group meetings, psychiatrists warn.
Claudia Bregman, a psychotherapist who is a member of the Aiglé Foundation’s Board of Directors, argues that when faced with what we have to live, the first thing that is present in people’s conscience is the uncontrollability of the situation. “Not because they are confined, people with pre-existing anxiety conditions are calm. The adverse context forces all people equally to be isolated, it is distressing and causes anxiety and depression, “said consulted by this means.
Beyond the characteristics of each one, people are entering another stage in the experience of staying at home, the routines that have been put together so far are reaching their limits and it seems necessary to reinvent themselves.
“It is that at this time people are feeling a limit, even those who have been carrying the quarantine more relaxed, are expressing a fatigue for the situation of confinement, anguish for the uncertainty about how to get out of this quarantine and the question of when this it ends up strong, ”added Fernández.
The spread of the virus cannot be mitigated for now, but the anticipated fear it causes can be mitigated through increased contact with therapists and individuals. As Wolfberg explained, anxiety is a subjective feeling of fear of a threat and one of the main causes of anxiety is the threat of separation from loved ones and loneliness.
“The uncertainty regarding lack of protection and control can be mitigated by reinforcing close ties with people who are counted on as a secure base on which to stand. Also controlling the care measures that provide the security of controlling the controllable and being inserted in the gigantic network of people who do the same “, concluded the expert.
Authorities continue to say that the coronavirus will spread like the flu to most people who get it, but that it is more likely to be fatal to older people and people in poor physical condition. However, the list of conditions should include depression caused by fear, loneliness, or pain.
We must recognize that for a large proportion of people, medication is not an indulgence and touch is not a luxury. And that for many of us, the chlorine wipes and face mask protocol is nothing compared to the daily task of disinfecting one’s mind.