Lockdown has been very difficult for peoples mental health. Add short, cold winter days when people tend to be more likely to be locked indoors for longer. It is a difficult time to be dealing with a mental health problem. It has been affecting so many more people who have struggled with isolation and loneliness.
We all have ups and ‘downs’ from time to time, but when these feelings are persistent and affect your ability to function, it may be a sign that you’re fighting depression.
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Depression is a serious mental health condition and not a sign of weakness. The extreme feeling of sadness can have a huge effect on your life reducing motivation, health and general quality of life. Depression can affect anybody at any point in their lives and more people than ever have felt that ‘darkness’ during the lockdown.
Isolation during lockdown has put relationships and mental health issues have increased in both adults and children’s mental health.
Here are a few tips to help yourself and your mental health through a lockdown during this pandemic.
Hopefully, these tips can help make you feel better but, please if you are feeling very depressed contact your Doctors or seek professional advice.
Lockdown Mental Health Checklist
A few tips to help yourself and your mental health through a lockdown.
It’s really odd not being able to see friends and family in person but with technology we can keep connections and regular contact.
Phone calls, online chat and messaging, and video chats like zoom, google meet and microsoft teams can all offer ways to keep up human contact.
Day light is so important as low levels of vitamin D are associated with depression and low mood
Also think of investing in a SAD lamp which offers a light therapy to help improve your mood.
Avoid News & Social Media
News try and avoid over-exposure to COVID-19 coverage if it is causing anxiety. It is important to stay informed but not to the detriment of your mental health.
Limit time on social media where inaccurate and sometimes frightening false information can be shared. If you see something that worries you check out the facts rather than let it play on your mind.
Plan Your Week
Planning your day and weeks can help give some structure into your life.
Plan your week to make sure you get pleasure and a feeling of achievement from the activities planned.
Tip: Set realistic goals – even as simple as getting dressed and a small trip out of the house every day. Achieving these can make you feel good about yourself and help encourage bigger goals for the future days and weeks.
Exercise boosts the ‘happy chemicals’ in your brain through the release of endorphins.
Exercise for depression is a great way to boost mood, increase physical and mental energy and reduce tension and stress..
Just a short walk is a great start don’t set huge challenges.
But remember when you are feeling depressed it can be difficult to exercise so don’t feel guilty or beat yourself up if you can’t bring yourself to exercise.
Self care and time for yourself is so very important
Cooking, reading a book, listening to music and soaking in the bath and other ways to pamper yourself.
Relaxation, meditation and mindfulness.
Personal appearance can make a big difference in how you feel about yourself. Dress for work even if you are not leaving the house.
Try to get enough sleep
Avoid napping throughout the day, and remove electronics equipment from the bedroom like TVs and your mobile phone.
Eat healthy and try not to overeat
Maybe feel alcohol takes the edge off the pain you are suffering and it may feel good in the short-term, but in the long-term it can make you feel far worse.
Ask for help and give help
Ask for help – Don’t suffer alone. Contact your doctors, mental health charities or consult a therapist.
Help others – This can give you a feeling of a positive emotion.
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