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Overcoming Anxiety

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Viswamitra, Mar 17, 2020.

  1. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Coronavirus anxiety is gripping the entire world with people being bombarded with more and more information about the lockdown, social distancing, work from home advice, advice to wash hands, door handles, switches, etc., the symptoms of the virus, travel advisories, the television shows predicting how many hospital beds are needed at the peak spread of coronavirus, the restaurants operating only for takeout, the retailers limiting the supplies and operating for limited hours, roads were deserted with no cars, inadequate availability of approved test kits, the vast majority in social media sites talking only about the virus and its effects. If one has just returned from China, Iran, Italy or South Korea, he or she becomes the prime target to gather more information.

    The first information about the virus was made available in late December 2019 and since then the researchers have been analyzing all details of this virus at length in various parts of the world. A clinical trial to test a vaccine has begun but despite fast track approval from FDA, the release of this vaccine for humans will take several months. Even though this virus is from the family of SARS and MERS viruses, this has a unique quality of its own. The main spread is happening through human to human interaction but since those who have not traveled or had contact with the infected persons also got this virus, there is a possibility that it could be susceptible to a community spread as well.

    Nobody knows how long the pandemic will last or how long it will be until we can resume our regular lives. The pervasive uncertainty of the situation makes it hard to plan a course of action and creates a high level of stress. Moreover, our typical reaction for de-stressing, such as working out in a gym, watching sports, meeting for happy hours with co-workers or hanging out with groups of friends, have been taken away due to social distancing. How can we respond to the coronavirus situation in a way that will preserve our psychological well-being? While we are focused so much on how to prevent viral infection, it is imperative to think about how to keep our mental state stable to handle this extreme situation.

    It is important to realize that a lot of anxious thoughts and emotions will show up during this time and to accept them rather than trying to push them away or escape them. The same goes for sadness stemming from the loss of our regular ways of living, worry about lack of supplies or apprehension about kids getting cabin fever. That’s because research has shown that avoidance of such emotions will only make them stronger and long-lasting. Notice negative emotions, thoughts, and physical sensations as they come up, look into them with curiosity, describe them without judgment and then let them go. This is an essence of mindfulness, which has been consistently linked to good psychological health.

    Although many people escape from reality by watching television, eating snacks, sleeping more, we need to be mindful of over-relying on these distraction strategies. Instead, studies have shown that planning and executing new routines that connect you to what really matters in life is the best recipe for good health. It’s important to establish structure, predictability and a sense of purpose with these new routines. It is important for adults and crucial for children to stick to regular wake-up, grooming, and mealtimes. Where and how everyone works, exercises, do chores, have fun together should also be planned, while understanding that we all need to be flexible and adapt as needed.


    It is hard when our tried-and-true ways of taking care of our physical and mental health is taken away. But let us not abandon them as science has shown that exercise, good nutrition and socializing are directly linked to emotional well-being, so now is the time to get creative. To keep the psychological well-being, we need to schedule self-care each day. It can consist of running or walking outside, using apps for home exercise or makeup sessions, and FaceTiming our friends. One thing that is still available to us, unless we experience complete lockdown, is nature. Studies show that spending time in nature, whether you are hiking or gardening, positively affects psychological health.


    It might help to realize that these trying times offer several avenues for psychological growth. Even during social distancing, there is an opportunity to deepen our relationships with the people in our household and beyond. This is also a great time for self-reflection and relooks at our priorities in life. Finally, we need to keep in mind that experiencing stress and negative emotions can have positive consequences. Studies show that people who go through very difficult life experiences can emerge from it with a stronger sense of psychological resilience, rekindled relationships and a renewed appreciation of life. Some describe starting to live more fully and purposefully. With care and planning, we can stay psychologically strong during the pandemic and perhaps even grow from this transformative experience.


    This situation is like living in wartime with our life severely restricted and run by the government. One can never predict when the war will come to an end or when the enemy will be in our backyard. We must trust our frontline defense team and do what we can do best to keep ourselves afloat to lead a normal life. Let us visualize that this also will pass, and the best times are ahead of us.


    Note: There are so many WhatsApp messages about what to chant including a) Aditya Hridhayam, b) Vaidyanatha Sthothram and those who believe in prayers can recite them or something else based on the religion they practice to reduce stress. Others can help the friends and neighbors by sharing the most relevant and updated information about the virus.
     
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  2. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan IL Hall of Fame

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    :hello: I read this comprehensive story of COVID - 19 and ways and means to encounter the related stress anxiety etc. you have given a nice blue print as to how to overcome the boredom in view of enforced stay indoors & enjoy life doing takingup meaningful useful activities.
    2. I happen to read the development of medicine in the link below for your info.

    Positive development: Australian researchers claim to find possible 'cure' for Coronavirus
    Regards.
    God bless.
     
  3. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Thyagarajan Sir,

    Thank you for your first response. The testing of HIV medicine along with other medicines was tried for an Italian couple in India as well. Italian (a physician himself) is recovering well. Even the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha is conducting a randomized, controlled clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the investigational antiviral remdesivir in hospitalized adults diagnosed with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

    The most important development is happening in Leibniz Institute for Primate Research who might have found an existing drug that might help treat Covid-19. Research findings showed that SARS-CoV-2 requires cellular protein TMPRSS2 to enter hosts’ lung cells. Furthermore, the team observed that the drug camostat mesylate, known to act against TMPRSS2, could block novel coronavirus infection, offering promise for a new treatment option (Cell). But this is yet to be tested under a clinical trial.
     
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  4. HariLakhera

    HariLakhera Platinum IL'ite

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    Timely advice to deal with the pandemic Covid-19. Yes it will also pass as people on the front lines are dealing with it. It will certainly leave a heavy dent in every field. Precaution is the only tool available for now.
    Stores are getting empty as people with money are stocking in bulk in times of uncertainty. This reminds me of the saying about human nature:
    "saman sau varas ka hai aur kal ki khabar nahi"
    (Providing for hundred years but not knowing what will happen tomorrow)
    Take care friends.
     
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  5. sln

    sln Platinum IL'ite

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    Dear Viswa,
    Timely article.Yesterday only there was a panel discussion on anxiety-ie whether we will get affected -whether our children are safe and whether we are prepared to deal with the situation etc,in India today TV. News papers,maids,courier services,medical supplies etc can contribute to the spread of the virus fast particularly when we are approaching the third stage,There are people who carry on as usual with the belief that whatever is to happen will happen.On the other side there are people who have stopped news papers,maids,courier services etc. In our house we cant do any of these. We have sanitisers all over the place.Strict vigil is kept on tell tale symptoms like cold and cough.Maids have been told not to travel.Swiggy,Zomato have been sent on their annual leave. We have started using nilavembu powder apart from thiru kadugu powder[sukku,milagu,thippili poWder and adathodai powder -100 grams each-mix and take one ice cream spoon every day as a preventive measure[available in Amazon].Anxiety will only aggravate matters.
    Regards SLN
     
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  6. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Hari Sir,

    You are right that the only tool we have is precautionary measures not to get the virus from our perspective. Different people are using different methods for prevention besides washing hands and not touching the face. I am using the inhalation of steam. I came to know that the virus dies at 60-degree celsius (140 degrees Fahrenheit)) The temperature of the steam I believe is between 185 degrees to 212 degrees as the water boils at this temperature. No one is able to predict how long this pandemic will continue and it is directly proportional to how the common public reacts to this virus or how quickly a vaccine is invented.
     
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  7. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear SLN Sir,

    Social distancing is a term unheard of in any country as humans are social animals. Here the people in other states are fuming about the Floridians using this enforced vacation to go to the beaches. I don't know when people will be responsible and listen to the advice of scientists and researchers. In Florida, the government authorities have asked to contact a phone number if there is a symptom of Coronavirus and asked patients not to rush to their doctors. The patients will have to be covered up and quarantined even before a test. Panic is more dangerous than pandemic. Hopefully, someone will have a vaccine soon to ease the tension. Can you share how these Nilavembu and Thirukadugu powder are helping to prevent Coronavirus?
     
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  8. Srama

    Srama IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear V sir,

    The gist of it all is in this sentence I think.
    That sense of purpose that we all try to find will be the hardest but find we must! You know sad to say but a long time friend and neighbor passe away a few days ago due to old age having lived a full enriching life and it made me realize that is also happening - the universe is doing its job of keeping up the cycles. We just have to pause, reset and repurpose. Trying times indeed but we have to believe in us, humans!
     
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  9. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    The moment I think it is a great time to discover myself excites me. Frankly, I don't need lockdown or social distancing to do it myself but this type of event triggers self-discovery. This is the time to do a spring cleaning of our mind and see how many thoughts we have in there, we don't have any use. This is the time to see the complexity in life and try to simplify. This is the time to learn more about the spouse and explore the minds of the children. This is the time to review how we need to refocus our use of time.
     
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  10. sln

    sln Platinum IL'ite

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    These ayurvedic herbs are specifically recommended for respiratory disorders and Corona virus affects the respiratory system.Nilavembu cures fever related illness and builds up the immunity system.Officially it is distributed free for dengue in Tamilnadu..SLN
     
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