Social distancing can be difficult for families for a number of different reasons. Stress and anxiety can become more prevalent in all ages of the household due to a sudden change in routine and the restrictions imposed on the community for social distancing. Everyone processes stress differently, especially in high risk settings like disease outbreaks, for those who are especially vulnerable to COVID-19. Stress due to a disease outbreak can affect:
- Sleep and eating patterns
- Worsening chronic problems
- Increased use of substances like alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs
- Fear for oneself and loved ones
- Problems concentrating
These manifestations of stress can negatively affect relationships between family members, significant others, friends, and roommates at times. The lack of engaging activities is the bane of the mind’s existence, it can lead to overwhelming emotions like loneliness, boredom and anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there are strategies to help keep a cool head during these kinds of world encompassing events.
Focusing on the things that you have control over is a big step in keeping yourself occupied. For example, this means:
- Practicing proper hygiene
- Making a plan for those in your household who are at high risk of COVID-19
- Being conscious of social distancing
These are just a few conscious efforts that one can make during the COVID-19 outbreak for the household as a whole.
Taking Care of Yourself
Taking care of yourself falls into a different category within the broad theme of keeping yourself occupied. Some things to consider doing are:
- Taking a break from social media and the news for a while (the constant pandemic updates can be upsetting to some)
- Engage your mind with hobbies
- Connect online with friends and others you are unable to see in person
- Take care of your body as you would normally
- Eat healthily
- Exercise (you can still go for runs and bike-rides)
- Get plenty of sleep
Coping with needing to socially distance yourself is understandably difficult in these circumstances. But helping each other out with the task of social distancing will potentially create a better understanding and bond between families and friends.
- How can social distancing be done with kids?
- How does social distancing work?
- How does social distancing slow down an outbreak?
- What are social distancing recommendations?
- What is the difference between social distancing and physical distancing?
- What is the difference between social distancing and isolation?
- What are social distancing requirements?
- Why should social distancing be practiced?