10 Minutes

By THE BALANCE
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The Covid-19 pandemic, also termed coronavirus, is a prevailing and ongoing global pandemic of an acute respiratory syndrome that started spreading from Wuhan, a city in China, in 2019. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2(SARS-CoV-2) is responsible for causing this deadly disease that made the whole world fearful and anxious of its unhampered widespread. This epidemic resulted in such horrifying consequences that it was declared a Public Health Emergency of International Health by WHO on 30th January 2020.   

Aside from its threatening symptoms and effects, this coronavirus is also found involved in causing Covid-19 Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder(Covid-19 PTSD) in patients after recovery from the primary disease. This Covid-19 PTSD trauma triggers different people differently with varying levels of stress and reactions to this trauma. This PTSD is commonly stimulated by living through, witnessing, or personally encountering this coronavirus trauma somehow. 

In most cases, this Covid-19 PTSD was caused by or aggravated to a higher level by the depressing situations including loss of dear ones, social seclusion, the threat of disease, and financial uncertainties rooting from the covid-19 pandemic. The frontline healthcare workers, people who were deprived of jobs, and people who lost their loved ones contributed as a major portion of people affected with Covid-19 PTSD.

The COVID-19 pandemic is complex as it is an ongoing trauma; there are many proofs that it does not just happen once and doesn’t have any specific end date. Furthermore, it can be complicated by grief and loss, past traumatic events, many fearful events co-occurring, and the sense of loss of control. In a short time, COVID-19 has become a global health emergency affecting physical and psychological health as people are more exposed to unexpected deaths or threats of death. For example, healthcare workers who have to contact closely with COVID patients are not only exposed to the virus regularly, but they are also going through increased deaths, illnesses, and supply shortages. 

Covid 19 Anxiety Symptoms and Treatment

Additionally, COVID patients admitted to the hospitals experience physical discomfort, social isolation, and fear for survival. These exposures increase the risk of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Moreover, the risk can also increase during the coming weeks when the patients may lack direct social support due to the necessity to self-quarantine. 

Due to COVID-19, it can be said that all people are currently experiencing or have experienced a traumatic event. Some examples count the following but are not limited to:

  • Being hospitalized
  • The threat of losing one’s job, house, or income
  • The fear of yourself or close relatives becoming ill
  • Not being able to leave the home
  • Being diagnosed or having symptoms of COVID-19
  • Health care workers or family members seeing people die or looking after the severely ill people

These traumatic events can also re-activate other past traumas that were previously resolved, forgotten, or buried. 

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a stress-related disorder and trauma that can occur after exposure to severe trauma. The traumatic situations can vary from person to person. Many fearful and life-threatening events can cause someone to develop PTSD. Surviving natural disasters such as earthquakes, flooding, and the pandemics such as COVID-19 can also cause post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Trauma Counseling and Therapies

Psychological health experts worry about the unpreventable effects that the pandemic will have on society. Some people will face depression, anxiety, and even COVID-19 Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder_ a condition associated with the terrifying situations related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Up to one-third of people who experience the feeling of not being able to breathe, as in many cases of COVID-19, develop clinical Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after those experiences. According to Dr Dnovitch

“Research shows that the experience of being hospitalized_being frightened and confused and feeling like you are drowning_is traumatizing.” Wright said,” Getting COVID, being intubated, and surviving_that could be a traumatic event.”

Some common causes of COVID-19 PTSD are:

For Patients

  • Living with isolation and uncertainty
  • Grief and loss
  • Losing someone close to you in upset circumstances
  • Being sectioned or getting treatment in an isolation ward
  • Being diagnosed with a life-threatening condition
  • Bad social behavior or even patients’ relatives do not behave well with them in some cases.
  • The stress of being jobless
  • The rude behavior of some hospitals and doctors, which could not provide treatment to them
  • The stress of being far away from family

For Healthcare Workers

  • The helplessness while watching dozens of people dying
  • The horrified behavior of patient’s close relatives while seeing their family member leaving this world in front of their eyes
  • The careless behavior of people. For example, not wearing masks, not following social distancing, and their mindset about COVID
  • Staying away from their family for months
  • The fearful situation of not having enough beds, oxygen, and ventilators for patients
  • To do patients treatment with extreme care where any minor mistake can endanger someone’s precious life.

COVID-19 PTSD affects many aspects of life. It can cause you to feel more unsafe, anxious, and on high alert. It can make you less interested in doing things that people consider safe. With post-traumatic stress disorder, you can feel that the whole world is trying to harm you. It can also affect your ability to handle various difficult situations. In such cases, trusting others and being intimate with others can be challenging.

Here are some symptoms for COVID-19 PTSD:

Feeling More On Guard Or Unsafe

Health and safety are huge concerns for everyone during this time. If you have PTSD, these concerns can be more intense and frequent than others. In such conditions, you avoid people more than usual or find that you are worried about getting the virus. The places that felt safe before the COVID can now make you feel anxious. And you can feel more nervous than usual, even other than COVID. 

More Trauma Triggers

You may find that you are feeling more triggers or reminders of your trauma. Hearing others’ discussions about the COVID as if we are fighting a war, a battle with COVID, or a hidden enemy, can bring up uncomfortable memories and feelings. For people whose trauma involves breathing difficulties, wearing masks and seeing others doing things can remind them of that trauma.

Not Doing Things That Are Still Contemplated Safe

There may be many of things that you can’t do right now because of COVID. If you find that you are not performing safe things, then it’s because of PTSD. These things can be like taking care of yourself and basic needs like exercise and shopping. Or maybe things like watching movies, or spending time outdoors that you used to enjoy. 

Increased Negative Thoughts And Feelings

You can now have more negative thoughts or thoughts that may be connected with COVID-19. You can feel more irritable or angrier, especially if you do not do activities that help you blow off steam. You may also have a short reunion with your close relatives because you are together more than expected and out of your daily routines. 

Problems With Sleep And Concentration

You can find it hard to concentrate and do things that helped you to focus before the pandemic. Added stress and worry can make it challenging to get good sleep. Rather than usual, you can find it hard to fall asleep or stay asleep if you are worrying more or your COVID-19 PTSD symptoms get severe. 

Long-term Covid-19 Post-Traumatic Stress disorder can lead to a dangerous health condition, and as early as possible, treatment should be prioritized to minimize the health loss. The one foremost thing to tackle this disorder is willpower. You need to vitalize to defeat this disease and get out of this to procure a positive outlook about life and motivate others. The advice of most of the experts about how to overthrow Covid-19 PTSD suggests therapeutic and counseling treatments. Firstly opening up to a reliable and trustworthy health professional and taking a piece of honest advice will help you analyze your problem in a better way. The following are the most recommended and trusted therapies on which you can undoubtedly rely if you are looking for an easy and effective way to deal with your Covid-19 PTSD:

Prolonged Exposure Therapy

This therapy mainly guides you to innovative ideas to deal with the traumatic thoughts and scenarios related to Covid-19 PTSD. The breathing and relaxation exercises during this therapy will let you proficiently cope with the triggers of this disorder and calm yourself. During this therapy, the therapist will make you practice those traumatic situations by reminding you of those situations and, consequently, teaching you how to reduce your reaction to these situations over time. This prolonged exposure practice will let you control your stressful thoughts and help you manage your thinking and feelings regarding the disorder.

Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)

Cognitive processing therapy teaches you to cope with the negative thoughts relating to Covid-19 PTSD that badly affect your mental health. By taking this therapy, you with your therapist will better understand that what you stumbled on. During CPT, learn about competencies to control your nerves and knock down your covid related PTSD. It helps you to forget your traumatic memories. By engaging in this therapy, you can control and distinctively make a difference between real situations and imagery situations that result in Covid-19 PTSD and ultimately effort to diminish these emotions.

Other Therapies

Other psychotherapeutic therapies that can ease the Covid-19 PTSD include the following ones:

  • Coping skills training
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing(EMDR)
  • Acceptance and commitment training
  • PTSD psychoeducation
  • Family counseling

According to a study revealed by experts of Unites States Department of Veteran Affairs, if you exercise the given below steps in your daily routine hand-in-hand with the therapies as mentioned above, you will see the evident change in the intensity of your stress symptoms and anxiety routing from Covid-19 PTSD:

  • Keeping in touch with your friends and supportive family members will console your traumatized and overwhelmed thoughts that save you from the depressing sense of deprivation and isolation.
  • Adopting covid19 preventive measures counting social distancing, wearing a mask, washing hands for 20 seconds each time, sanitization, and avoiding the crowd, will make you feel safe and less anxious.
  •  By optimistic and positive outlook and concentrating on small “wins,” you get new hope and leave behind feelings of dismay and despair.
  • By taking quality sleep, performing daily yoga and exercise will help you to calm you and reduce all the stressors.
  • Take some preventive measures about the traumatic situation. The problem will not hit you hard, and the adverse consequences of the situation will be minimized to some extent. For example, if you are going to market, you can take preventive measures by carrying a hand sanitizer and wearing a mask.
  • You shall focus on improving your sense of self-efficacy. Your self-efficacy will help you to recognize your inner strength and courage and empowerment to fight tough times.
  • You will tackle the stress in a better way if you remain hopeful. In the words of researchers, hope gives you the expectation that everything will get over. So try to stay hopeful and optimistic and mitigate all the negative emotions.

Professionals are learning more about how severe cases of COVID-19 can impact a person’s psychological health. Research conducted in Italy found that 30% of people who recovered from COVID-19 developed PTSD. Psychiatrists say that it’s a condition that develops when you feel like your life is in danger. For COVID patients, an emergency room or ICU is the war zone, and the stressors are still there when they get out. 

Covid Depression Symptoms and Treatment

Johtasha Mosley said, “it was really horrified because you could hear people screaming. I felt like people were in the psych ward, crying, and it was weird.”

Mosley was one of the first COVID patients who went on the ventilator and survived. Most people recover COVID-19 PTSD on their own, but some may need someone who can help them treat it in a better way. The Balance is one of the best COVID-19 PTSD treatment centers that can help you cope with this trauma. It is also a known treatment center for the medication of COVID-19 PTSD because of its amassment to lavish facilities, luxurious provisions, and it is also tried and trusted by many people. The well-rounded treatment amenities keep the best possible care in the lap of luxury that a patient can look for. The holistic treatment facilities with splendiferous luxuries at THE BALANCE are;

  • Private villas
  • Driver
  • Housekeeping
  • Private chef
  • Big garden
  • Pool
  • Absolute privacy and much more.

Usually, Post-Traumatic Stress disorder is known to occur as a consequence of a past traumatic event; in the case of Covid-19 PTSD, the traumatic event is depicted as a coronavirus pandemic. The most crucial take is to critically look after your physical and psychological well-being during this challenging time. 

On the one hand, it will let you cope with your PTSD, and on the other hand, it will give you the vitality to combat the COVID-19 virus if you get it. Eating a healthy and nutritious diet, avoiding soda and sugary drinks, and minimizing alcohol consumption will surely enlighten your way towards sound health to withstand Covid-19 PTSD. 

The other foremost thing is an optimistic and spiriting attitude and reasoning that will give you a sense of encouragement not to lose hope and fight back against your PTSD. You should never lose confidence and try to remain around your loved ones because this will be your unbeatable power. At last, try to help yourself and others in guiding about this disorder and spreading awareness because it can do a lot in uplifting our society.