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Is a “Mental Health Pandemic” coming after COVID-19?

Over 1200 people in Nepal committed suicide during the lockdown. Suicides, along with increases in domestic violence, child abuse, there can be trauma where people are being physically abusive or emotionally abusive.
(A 72-year-old Egyptian fisherman from Khapaudi is returning from a fishing net in Fewatal. Laying nets in the lake and making a living by selling the caught fish in the market has been becoming the main occupation of the fishing community. Photo: Hari Banstool)

As communities around the world respond to the rapidly evolving situation around COVID-19, Coronavirus can stir up all sorts of feelings like fear, anxiety, or stress. A little stress can be helpful. It can be the motivator that keeps us self-isolating or washing our hands or maintaining our hygiene. But the constant or high level of stress can make you tend to behave in a way that isn’t in your best interests and can negatively affect our mental health. Taking care of the mind is always important, but doing so in the midst of a pandemic can be tricky. What we are facing is a traumatic event for a lot of people and what we know is while trauma is happening you do whatever you can do to survive. We’re still very much in the act of trauma phase of this pandemic.

With millions of people restricted to their homes and many losing their jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic, a spike in suicides may follow, experts fear. Social distancing may increase economic stress, social isolation, anxiety, and loneliness for some people and for the people who already faced mental health are in a crisis. The Number of suicide rates has been rapidly increasing during this pandemic. Experts fear that a “Mental Health Pandemic” is coming after COVID-19. People in a country like Nepal, India often ignore and neglect topics like mental health but people need to realize that mental health is as important as physical health.

Over 1200 people in Nepal committed suicide during the lockdown. Suicides, along with increases in domestic violence, child abuse, there can be trauma where people are being physically abusive or emotionally abusive. It could be also what we think of non-physical trauma, which is where there are more arguing and fighting or harsh or critical parenting or conflict between siblings which could increase suicide risk among youths. After the pandemic is over, there may be more than 80% chance that there will be mental health pandemic.

Suicide, depression, and anxiety concerns should be at the top of the STAY HOME and STAY SAFE list. If you find yourself feeling helpless or having thoughts of self-harm try to stay calm, distract yourself from doing things you like, take a deep breath, and try doing meditation for a few minutes. Mindfulness is well known to make people feel calmer. You can walk or do exercises or yoga. Exercises and yoga are good for mental and physical wellbeing. And set aside time to speak to your friends, colleagues, and family every day. Communicating and connecting with others help releases feel-good hormones. We are all in this together try telling things on your mind to someone it can help you cope with anxiety, depression, and other mental problems.

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