Pandemic and Mental Health

The lifestyles and priorities of many of us have changed with the Covid-19 outbreak. Both the struggle not to be caught in the epidemic and the psychological process experienced when caught tired all humanity. Medicana Samsun Hospital Exp. Clinical Psychologist Dila Soganci, answered questions about the psychological reflection of the epidemic process.

1- When you consider the people who come to you thinking that they are psychologically affected and/or affected by the pandemic, what is the biggest problem of people?

In fact, as a society, we have normal reactions to an abnormal situation. We are going through a process that we have not experienced before, we do not know, we gain experience. Everyone is worried, afraid, unhappy, but it is important how much we experience such feelings and how much they affect our lives. While I had clients with anxiety disorders, sleep problems, post-traumatic stress disorder, postpartum depression, depression, panic attack, and obsessive-compulsive disorder in the early days of the pandemic, virtual game addiction has now been added to these pathologies.

2- What kind of effects can people have in this epidemic, first of all being unemployed, and then the added cost of living, on the person and family life?

Desperate, hopeless and unhappy individuals struggle very hard with the human sense of uncertainty. Staying in that gray area puts most people in a depressed mood. They feel their hands tied. Here, people’s problem-solving skills also come into play, but the situation and conditions in which the person lives are very important.

3-Does it create a feeling of being trapped inside when people have to isolate themselves from social life with restrictions and build a pandemic wall between them and other people? What kind of effects does this have on people in the short/medium and long term?

What was a hug? As a society, we are used to showing our love tactfully. For these reasons, it was very difficult for people to cut contact with people. The most difficult thing during the pandemic period is the feeling of being trapped. As soon as the ban was said, it was overwhelming to stay at home, but the day before, there was no ban and the person was still at home. That word made people feel stuck. People are used to living without contact, hugging, kissing, shaking hands, such actions may become rare in our lives after the pandemic. There are also people who are happy that they don’t have to shake hands or kiss people. In other words, when it comes to people, he does not say anything clearly, like fingerprints, one person is very unhappy without contact, while another person can say that he would never like it anyway.

4-Experiencing and seeing the effects of this epidemic, being immersed in the situation that has been exaggerated by word of mouth among the public, and the use of useful/useless information about the epidemic in the media every day lead a person to what kind of situation does it lead to, and how does this affect a person’s self-confidence and socialization skills?

There was fear during the first ban, there was a lot of media follow-up, and there were people who were obsessed with it. Right now there is more anger, anxiety, a sense of abandonment. People are very overwhelmed and there is a majority who no longer even look at the number of cases. Self-confidence and socialization skills for children and adolescents are negatively affected. Nursery, school and activities were areas where they could socialize and increase their self-confidence. No matter how hard we try to prevent it, most of them are on tablets and computers.

5- What would you suggest as a psychologist to the society and individuals?

There are very few things we do for ourselves in our daily life. Many people live to survive or forget about themselves in the rhythm of the day. It is necessary to create a space for ourselves, to take up a hobby, to take a walk if the conditions are suitable, to pay attention to sleep and diet. They should not avoid getting professional support.

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