The COVID-19 pandemic has brought adverse effects to the mental well being of everyone across the globe, and this trend can be observed amongst Singaporeans as well. A recently concluded study by the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) found that 13% of the surveyed population exhibited symptoms of depression or anxiety. These symptoms were more apparent in the Singaporean youth, where a majority cited that a main stressor was anxiety over their futures.
Even by just observing the general surroundings, we can conclude that something needs to be done to address the growing concerns of the rise of such emotional instabilities.
Though such emotions are normal reactions in times of uncertainty, it can develop into a serious issue once a threshold has passed. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), depression and anxiety can develop into a disorder when they result in disturbances in one’s routine, whether professionally, personally, or socially.
For example, an appropriate response to COVID-19 may stem from a concern of contracting the disease, hence the individual counteracts through proper hygiene practices. This anxiety then evolves into a problem if it restricts activities such as socialising or stepping out to become a productive member of society.
It’s also without a doubt that having such uncertainties over your head can adversely affect an individual’s mood which follows into a gradual descent into hopelessness, thoughts of self-harm, or even suicide.
Though it may seem bleak, it’s never wrong to ask for help. Reach out to your friends and family, because sometimes, all it takes is just for someone to listen to your story and understand what you’re going through. Alternatively, Singapore has several resources in place so that you are never alone in your struggles.
Contact the numbers below to reach out, and always remember: you are never alone.
Crisis Hotlines – Mental Health Singapore
National Care Hotline (1800 202 6868)
Institute of Mental Health’s (IMH) Mental Health Helpline (6389 2222)
The COVID-19 pandemic has been unique in terms of its persistence, frightening mutations, and infectability, and having been approximately 2 years in, we are still learning new things about it everyday. However, the most difficult thing as many of the readers would agree is the uncertainty in all aspects of our lives, where something insignificant such as toilet paper became the hottest commodity when the circuit breaker was announced.
For many Singaporeans, living with COVID-19 was a difficult task, but there are some ways to preserve your mental health with the following tips:
1. Create and maintain a routine
A routine will maintain a sense of familiarity and normalcy as you can expect what activity to perform next, ensuring that you regain a sense of control over your life.
2. Keep a healthy and active lifestyle – Mental Wellness & Mental Health Singapore
Exercising or indulging in your hobbies can do wonders to the body in relieving it of any stress that could stem from work, environment, or simply being indoors all day.
3. Avoid isolating yourself emotionally
Put an effort into keeping in contact with your friends and family. Have a Google Meet hangout, talk to your friends over Discord, or Zoom with your relatives. Social contact reminds us that we are all not alone in this pandemic, and more often than not, company is just a call away.
4. Adopt a more balanced view of your struggles – Mental Wellness & Mental Health Singapore
Don’t deflate or inflate your struggles, and definitely do not compare your struggles with others. It’s important to remember that the struggles that everyone is facing is unique to them, and may differ from yours. However, a struggle is a struggle, and your feelings about it are valid and important, so seek the help necessary to resolve it.
5. Keep yourself informed via reliable news channels
A reliable source of information allows you to plan ahead accurately and anticipate what’s coming next.
6. Look out for one another
We Singaporeans are all in the same boat, and it’s important that we keep a vigilant eye over our friends, families, and neighbours. If you notice someone who’s safety or health may be at risk, don’t hesitate to reach out to the relevant authorities.
Never Alone When It Comes To Mental Wellness – Mental Health Singapore
Everyone deals with the pandemic in their own unique way, but the most important thing to remember is that you are never alone, and it is okay to struggle and seek help.
Tags: mental wellness, mental health Singapore
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