Depression from Covid-19 or the Blues?
The COVID-19 pandemic has been an oppressive influence on our lives for a year now. Many are really feeling the strain on their emotional endurance because of dramatic life changes and the increasing uncertainty of their future.
The pandemic looms large on everyone’s consciousness, so it’s only natural that your thoughts will turn to it throughout the day. However, be mindful that the frequency and duration of your thoughts on COVID-19 don’t overrun your mind or negatively influence your life.
If you feel that your excessive focus on the pandemic impacts your stress levels and worry, here are some signals to watch out for that will be telling you it’s time to find help and support.
How to Know if You Have the COVID-19 Blues
Depression affects everyone differently, but there are common signs to be aware of, which include:
- Feelings of guilt
- You are tearful, sad, and feel hopeless and empty
- You don’t find any joy in the things you used to like
- You are angry and irritable for no reason
- You are avoiding friends and family
- Your sleep patterns have changed
- You have thoughts about self-harming
- Weight loss and loss of appetite
The social distancing and isolation and regulations in place prevent us from doing many of the things we used to do for fun and relaxation. A self-imposed restriction may indicate a severe underlying condition.
Consider Your Symptoms and How Long They Last
Feeling blue can often produce symptoms like anxiety or depression, but the main difference lies in their longevity.
Being a little down or feeling blue usually doesn’t last much longer than a few hours, but severe depression can linger for up to two weeks. If you find yourself frequently drawn away from your regular routines with family and work, then you should consider it a sign of a more serious issue.
You or a loved one may experience periods of happiness and joy during a depressive episode, but there’s no reason to believe you are in all the clear. Even extended periods of depression can be punctuated by periods of happiness. However, if you find yourself experiencing long bouts of sadness or feeling anxious more often than not, consider seeking professional help.
If you’ve experienced depression in the past, then there is an increased chance it will resurface in the future, especially during the challenges you are currently facing. You need to watch out for the signs and seek help whenever you or a loved one appear depressed.
Don’t Let Depression Push You Around
When you’re feeling depressed, your body often works against you by telling you to do the opposite of what you should be doing. It’s almost like the body is doing everything in its power to keep you in a depressive state.
For example, your body will tell you to skip the things you enjoy and should be doing, like getting out of bed, doing your morning exercise, and eating a healthy breakfast. Moping in bed might feel like the better option, but once you are up and active, it never seems as bad as you thought it would be.
Ask for Help in Dealing with Depression Brought on by the Pandemic
With vaccines becoming available soon, there is light at the end of the tunnel. In the meantime, there is no need to suffer with depression until the pandemic is over. Know that with support you can overcome your feelings of depression.
Many people are struggling with symptoms of depression at this time, so you are not alone. With professional support, you can achieve freedom from this debilitating mental health condition. The sooner you seek support, the faster you can recover.
Help is available, even during social distancing and quarantine. A psychotherapist can set up virtual telemedicine sessions through the internet to provide all the support and help you need during these challenging times. Learn more about how counseling can help you feel like yourself again by clicking here: Depression Treatment