Psychological Bleed-COVID Warriors-Are We Listening?

Doctors mental well being is very important and must be the priority.

Dr Pavana SP

By Dr Pavana S P
Consultant Psychiatrist
Avighna Speciality Clinic

Yet again time & nature has proved that no job is superior or inferior and needs to be equally respected. Pandemic has taught us tough lessons.

We have clapped,clanged utensils,lit Diyas to salute their bravery,But their is another side to it, They are not just fighting Pandemic but are fighting against their own fears, Yes they are human beings too and are also scared.

Lets look at this perspective,Every medical professional knows his own vulnerability catching infections,Risk of passing on to his own family members,Balancing personal and professional needs,Financial constrains-Not being paid in time & up to 70% cut in their salaries, Doctors- rents, EMI’s,  all this fear it takes , In spite of all this fear it takes tremendous amount of mental strength to keep going.

“When normal functioning people are exposed to extraorinary condition their is some amount of distress”

How does one know if they are undergoing stress or emotional turmoil?

This does not mean that they are having some psychiatric illness,When normal functioning people are exposed to extraordinary conditions their is some amount of distress.

How is this stress messing it up with our Brain? 

When we are stressed it triggers Amygdala an emotional processing Head quarters in brain.What ever we see or ear signals are sent to Amygdala which determines if its stressful.

If its stressful then signals are sent to hypothalamus where it activates ANS(autonamic nervous system)which stimulates Adrenal gland- Increase in Adrenalin making heart beat faster,breathing increases,sweating.All this happens at blink of an eye.So during this acute crisis you just cant think logically and just react.

If stress becomes more and more and for longer period of time, stress hormones cortisol take over and person starts feeling forgetfulness/poor memory,Depression,Anxiety.

 How do we rewire our brain or manage stress?

  • Hearing about pandemic news repeatedly can be upsetting- Stop watching news continuously including social media
  • Take care of your body-Deep breathing exercises,meditation at least for 5 minutes.
  • Exercise regularly-which releases endorphins(happy hormones) keeps check on your mood.
  • Do not compromise on Healthy food.
  • Get adequate sleep- because 76% of COVID warriors have reported of insomnia/ sleep disturbances.
  • Avoid alcohol/cigarette this will again have negative impact on mind.
  • Keep connected with your loved ones Family/Friends.
  • Get accurate information about COVID from authanticated websites.

However its is very important to have “ME TIME“, doctors mental wellbeing and support is very important and must be the priority, staying connected with loved ones is a must.Take professional help ,virtual mental health services,Tele therapy.