So, how are you? A recent national survey from CAMH https://www.camh.ca/en/health-info/mental-health-and-covid-19/covid-19-national-survey on the impact of COVID-19 and Mental Health and Substance Use had some startling findings.
CAMH has been studying the impact of COVID-19 since the early spring of 2020. In its latest survey all indicators reported higher negative indicators with 24.3% reporting moderate to severe anxiety, 25.7% engaging in binge drinking, 23.3% felt lonely and 21.7% felt depressed. Covid-19 appears to be impacting the following cohorts more than others with young people aged 18-39, women and households with children reporting higher negative impacts.
Of interest, is that 74.7% of those who reported high to moderate levels of anxiety are somewhat worried or very worried about their finances! This is significantly higher than their anxiety about actually contracting the virus 63.5%. Not surprisingly, those whose employment has been affected or whose job has a higher risk for being exposed to COVID-19 have reported higher propensity for loneliness or depression.
It’s not all bad news. Participants report that the top activities to help cope with pandemic fatigue are connecting socially with friends and family (92.3%), making time to relax (91.2%) and following a routine (91.9%). From my observations of my local conservation areas I think many people are also increasing their outdoor physical activities. (Sure, beats the shopping mall and is a lot cheaper).
Some other suggestions to help during this stressful period of time:
- Disconnect for some extended periods of time from social media and news about the pandemic.
- Take care of yourself by eating healthy, exercising and maintain good sleep habits.
- Avoid unhealthy substances.
- Pray and meditate.
If you require assistance be sure to reach out to someone. Resources are available including through your workplace EAP program.
To receive assistance call 1-800-387-4765 (English) or 1-800-361-5676 (French) or visit: www.workhealth.com.
This service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at no cost to you. Counselling is available by telephone, in-person, online, and text-based self-help.
We would love to hear from you. Let us know how you are coping by commenting on this blog.