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  • Selena Thian

MCO Extended: Mental Health Care During Self-Isolation

With the announcement of the partial lockdown extension in Malaysia today along with the rising number of infected cases around the globe, the brewing feeling of panic and relentlessness is inevitable. With more than one million people being infected with the coronavirus outbreak, the world has plummeted into a sense of uncertainty.

While it is important to keep a healthy body during this outbreak, we mustn't forget to take care of our mental well-being too. These constant reminders to improve cleanliness, self-quarantine or restrict movement overall by the news media have quickly taken a toll on many individual's mental health, especially those who may suffer from anxiety, depression, OCD and other forms of disorders.

WHO also released valuable advice on how to protect our mental health during this period as well and it was strongly welcomed by the public. There are several ways to keep a clear and healthy mindset which would greatly help us get by during this time.

1) Avoid Information Overload

Be sure to keep track of only a few news articles daily and avoid receiving too much information, especially stories and information from social media sites, as many are made to be attention-seeking rather than factual or inaccurate. To avoid information overload, try to select a handful of trusted news channels and outlets and browse them on a rotational basis, not reading more than 2 articles on the topic daily as well.

2) Take Breaks from Social Media

It is also important to take frequent short breaks from social media to reduce an overall burnout. Be sure to mute any triggering stories and articles found on your news feed as well. Take time off your devices and savor some sunlight or nature if possible. Along with plenty of sleep, exercise and healthy diet, you'll feel more refreshed!

3) Indulge in a Hobby

One is never too old to learn new tricks! During this period, many people tend to have more free time for their own passion and hobbies. It's a great time to pick up that paintbrush or guitar that's been sitting in the storeroom and immerse yourself fully without any distraction. Not only will this improve your mental health, it will allow you to discover new passions along the way too.

4) Stay Connected to People

While self-isolation has created a rift between people physically, it doesn't mean that we cannot stay connected to one another with different means either. With the technological advancement these days, there are many other ways to keep a strong relationship with our closest friends and family. Put in the extra effort to check in regularly with everyone and strike a balance between self-isolation and communicating with others.

No matter what the methods, we hope that everyone will always take care of their well-being and be sure to lend a hand to those who may be having difficulties coping with this isolation period. Stay safe and healthy!

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