Dealing with the pandemic: consequences and solutions

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Tayba Abdulrahman Mugibel from Yemen, 3rd year medical student at Hadramout University College of Medicine, media assistant in the national team of the standing committee on research exchange NAMS_YEMEN. She is affiliated with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


Fear, stress, and worry are physiological responses that anyone might normally go through in stressful situations. In terms of COVID-19 which is not only stressful, it’s a life-threatening condition that exaggerates these feelings and affecting mental health.

During the pandemic, people have been suffered a lot and some of them have lost their beloved ones which affects their emotions negatively and contribute to poor mental health this puts them in danger of developing serious psychological distress especially those who haven’t been through such a pandemic before as children and adolescents.

So what are the consequences of COVID-19 on the mental health of those young people? Undoubtedly, stress can cause changes in energy, interests, difficulty concentrating, or making decisions. In addition, anxiety and nervousness will affect the immune system and decrease its ability to fight infections so even if you are young with good physical health, your poor mental health might make you at risk thus being physically and mentally healthy is the main precaution from diseases.

When it comes to children, their mental health is negatively affected in this pandemic resulting from the suspension of social activities and studying at homes due to school closures. This may result in serious consequences for example delayed cognitive, emotional, and social development.

Healthcare workers are the cornerstone and the first line of defense against the COVID19 pandemic, therefore having good mental health is extremely important since being depressed or having severe anxiety might reflect badly on their performance and productivity.

Fortunately, in my community, many organizations have prepared campaigns to help people overcome this stressful event. As stress and adversity can also be a path towards growth and meaning, many students take advantage of this pandemic period by improving their knowledge and skills and even learn new ones and these are ways that fostered mental health on the other hand.

To manage stressful situations, here we have some tips to follow;

– Set a limited time to watch, read or listen to the pandemic updates or just take a break from the news stories.

– Exercise, healthy food, enough sleep, and rest particularly for the frontline responders who are working tirelessly to save lives.

– Creative play and physical activity as drawing, singing, and dancing can help children relieve stress and maintain mental health.

Finally, it is important to bear in mind that this crisis will end very soon as the effective vaccines come to light so just try to maintain your health and be safe and always remember that taking care of yourself will provide you with such great power to help others cope with stress, get them back on their feet and above of all feel connected and supported.

References

CDC organizational. COVID-19 Coping with Stress. 22 Jan 2021. Available at : https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html . (Accessed in 20/6/2021).

World Health Organization. COVID-19 and mental health. 8 April 2021. Available at : https://www.who.int/westernpacific/emergencies/covid-19/information/covid-19-mental-health . (Accessed in : 20/6/2021).

About the author

Tayba Abdulrahman Mugibel from Yemen, 3rd year medical student at Hadramout University College of Medicine, media assistant in the national team of the standing committee on research exchange NAMS_YEMEN. Also, the Vice-President of Yemeni Dandy Club and volunteer at out-reach clinician development foundation. She is interesting in volunteering, learning new skills and languages. She has participated in many campaigns and programs as Research Crash Program and IFMSA_EGYPT Research Online Camp. Recently, she has completed a research regarding COVID-19 and now she is working as a key contact participant in a multicentric comparative analysis regarding COVID-19 vaccine.

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