‘Pandemic PTSD’: Health professionals release concerning study
The coronavirus pandemic has forced change across the globe, and new research suggests an alarming number of Americans may be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) because of it.
From social distancing, isolation, unemployment, and fears of getting sick, these past few months haven’t been easy on anyone.
“The pandemic is highly stressful,” commented Megan Holmes, Founding Director for the Center of Trauma & Adversity. She helped to lead a study of on around 1,200 Americans concerning how the pandemic has effected their mental state.
“About 85 percent are experiencing at least one or more post traumatic stress symptom and about 28 percent would meet the diagnostic criteria for PTSD,” said Holmes.
She says symptoms can include:
- Re-experiencing unwanted memories
- Having negative thoughts or moods
- Avoiding distressing feelings
- Changes to how you react to distressing feelings
“We have experienced tremendous loss during this pandemic and I’m not necessarily talking about the enormous number of lives we have lost. We’ve also lost our ability to live in a way we’ve lived before”.
But, it’s important to remember that there are ways to cope.
Holmes says some good ways to do that are:
- Create a self-care plan
- Find ways to reduce stress and take care of your body
- Take a break from the news and social media
- Do activities you enjoy
- Connect with others
If you aren’t able to reduce stress, make sure to reach out to a health care professional.