Importance of Mental Health and keeping it together in a Pandemic 

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This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr. Rao Ahsan, a medical student from Pakistan struggling to become a good doctor. He is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


As all this is new regarding Covid-19, the illness despite everything carries on like any of earlier epidemics. It is much like the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) episode, an epidemic which can be used as an example for our current pandemic. SARS was, from multiple points of view, the most ideal situation for reacting against a worldwide infectious epidemic. The spread of SARS was contained decently fast by public health endeavors, predominantly by the isolation (Quarantine). But Health consequences were seen in this success too. Even if, by isolation and social distancing, physical spread of the infection, It left many effects on mental health which lasted for much time.

The effects of Quarantine and Social Distancing in Covid-19 can affect mental health and thus health for many years in future. These effects include psychosocial risks, PTSD, Suicidal Behavior and other health related risks. So, it is important to keep it together in such conditions, taking care of your mental wellbeing. There are some suggestions to keep your mental integrity stable during pandemic.

Staying connected with each other despite social distancing. Video calls are the best source of staying connected and staying connected with friends and family helps. Believe me, it does.

Taking care of your health: Eat healthy and balanced diets, exercise regularly, drinking 3L water each day, stay away from smoking and drinking etc. A healthy body has a healthy mind.

Taking care of the sleep: A person should sleep minimum 6 hours and maximum 12 hours. Perfect sleeping can root out different mental problems.

Share your problems and worries with others. Sharing your problems lightens up your heart and makes you happy. Whereas, keeping those problems in heart threaten your mental integrity.

Helping others: Find new ways to help and support others. It will bring peace of mind for you and it will also help others stabilize themselves in quarantine.

Do things you love to do: Doing things that you like to do, doing things that make you happy and avoid things that make you sad or emotional is also a big source of mental stability.

Set ambitions: An empty mind is a devil’s workshop. Staying useless can give rise to many unwanted thoughts. So, set goals which keep you busy and whose completion also helps you in mental peace.

Don’t watch the news all the time and gather only facts. There are many rumors in the times of pandemic which are totally based on lies or myths. Avoiding them is the best we can do.

Keeping your mind agile: Do things which boost the mind power like reading books, playing games like crosswords, sudoku, draw or paint and stuff like this.

Relax and focus: Allot yourself a particular relaxing time and relaxation method. Some people do yoga, while others focus on their daily deeds before sleeping.

About the author

Rao Ahsan is a medical student from Pakistan struggling to become a good doctor. A proud member of IFMSA-Pakistan since this year who loves to write.

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