Coronavirus: Social Distancing and Anxiety

Coronavirus%3A+Social+Distancing+and+Anxiety

Emily Fitz-Patrick, Author

If you go to Giant, Food Lion, Costco, or wherever you get your groceries, you’ll notice that empty shelves which used to be overflowing with toilet paper are now empty. You’ll notice that milk, eggs, and other staples are now gone from stores. People line up in crowds just to get into grocery stores to stock up on foods for self quarantining as “social distancing,” begins to take effect.

According to the CDC, adults with underlying health conditions and the elderly are at higher risk for contracting and having more severe symptoms associated with COVID-19. COVID-19 is a fast spreading illness that has taken the lives of many elderly people particularly in the past few months. It is a brand new strain, an offshoot of SARS. Governments have responded by encouraging people to practice social distancing and by closing schools and other public places with gatherings of ten people or more. Governors have issued statements such as “young people must protect their grandparents by practicing social distancing.” It is in fact, selfish not to practice social distancing, even if you are not worried for your own health and safety. Stay at home orders have now been in place for at least a month.

How will social distancing impact the world around us? How will it affect people in romantic relationships who can’t see each other, or teenagers stuck in the house with their parents? For some, school is their only safe place. If you google “families stuck at home” you’ll find many bored parents sharing resources with other parents. This is because as we begin to move into lockdown, anxiety increases every day. The kids get antsy, the parents go crazy, teenagers are fussy due to online learning. Too many people in one house is a recipe for disaster.

There are many ways to combat social distancing anxiety. Stay connected through the phone, and on social media. Occupy yourself with coloring pages, crocheting, or a kind of craft. Lastly, make sure you’re eating healthy, working out, getting sunshine, and talking walks outside! It’s important to exercise as well as keep your space clean. Go for drives, call relatives and friends, and get creative! 🙂