Deep Impact: Effects of Social Distancing

Many are still keeping contact with people just at a distance

Michael Crane

Many are still keeping contact with people just at a distance

Aidan May, Writer

It has been well over a month since social distancing became commonplace. Being away from certain people for long periods of time can be taxing on the mind. Humans are social creatures, it is an essential part of keeping us sane. Not seeing anyone,however,can lead to some lasting psychological effects. There are ways to prevent and help cope with social distancing. But the impact of social distancing on the mind can be shocking.

By now most have gotten used to the routine of being distanced from others. Whether it’s a new hobby, exercise, a puzzle, people are keeping themselves occupied to say the least. Eventually, consistently occupying time starts to lose its effectiveness. Pretty soon, feelings of boredom and loneliness take hold. This is when the cabin fever begins to kick in. Cabin fever is when a person becomes anxious and irritable when stuck indoors, away from people, for long periods of time. It often leads to symptoms of depression and anxiety. Many researchers have predicted that the rate of mental illness globally is likely to go up during the extended home vacation. There are other factors that play into this. 

Other ways social distancing impacts the mind is stress. Yes, being away from friends is a little stressful, along with only seeing family everyday. Stress can lead to emotional issues, insomnia or abnormal eating patterns. There has also been a spike in reports of strange dreams and or night terrors that are likely attributed to stress. A recent study found that out of a group of 2,700 people were placed in isolated conditions 34 percent of that group reported signs of psychological distress. It would be hard to find the number for a global population, but a small group of which are negatively affected by the recent quarantine. Not to mention that if things get worse and morale drops, mental health would be declining real soon. The more stress added the worse the effects could be. Luckily, there are ways to help reduce stress on the mind.

There are many ways people could help keep their minds happy and morale high. Exercise has been proven to work, a healthy body leads to a healthy mind. Another way is to keep a steady routine, by keeping order in life it helps maintain a sense of purpose for the day. Communicate with anyone you can virtually, just talking through a situation like this can make it better. 

While this could be temporary, it can be a very taxing experience for this long. There are plenty of other ways to help deal with this. Just remember everyone is going through the same thing. It is important to keep the mind healthy so this experience will not be such a downturn in life. While staying in a house for long periods of time is not really fun,keeping a better outlook on a situation like this one, will make the experience a lot more tolerable