Cases of anxiety double in Spain since the pandemic

The coronavirus produces a disease that affects the lungs of the human body, and can cause severe pneumonia that endangers the life of the patient in some cases, especially in those who are at risk groups. Something obvious that everyone knows after seven months of pandemic; HoweverIt is also the cause of other underlying ills that affect an equally vital organ: the brain.

The collateral effects of confinement for people's mental health, added to the vital and social uncertainty that does not stop making a dent in people's minds, have caused psychological consultations to have skyrocketed compared to last year. This is reflected in the study 'Online psychology and therapy in Spain in the era of Covid-19'conducted by the online psychologist platform iFeel from a sample of 200,000 patients, which reveals an increase in 168.6% of the consultations since the start of the alarm state. Similarly, those related to treating grief have also grown very notoriously, up to 135.7%. For their part, those in charge of assisting depressive symptoms rose 80.9%.

The isolation of the quarantine revealed the drama of loneliness and lack of social skills that many people suffer

"The health crisis also refers to mental disorders caused by the pandemic, it is an indication of health," he says Rafael San Roman, psychologist and author of the study, to El Confidencial. "Although we associate anxiety with something unpleasant, it is a set of normal sensations that a human being has to deal with at some point in his life under different circumstances. It has an emotional component associated with fear, restlessness or worry, and its Sometimes a somatic component, expressed through physical symptoms, such as tremors, hives or tachycardias. The disorder comes when it becomes chronic and the symptoms recur over time for no apparent reason or trigger. "

How to distinguish anxiety from depression? There is a tendency to think that the former refers to concern about the nearest future, while the latter refers to the pain caused by the past. However, as San Román explains, "depression is not only a state of deep sadness for something that may have happened, but it also crushes you, robs you of energy, makes you disconnect from your social relationships and responsibilities. Although most people with depression can be functional, in the end it is a very labyrinthine problem, in which you do not see a solution to anything. It is not a mere sadness, but a way of seeing the world and contemplate life as if it were a labyrinth with no way out.

Worse in social skills

Another of the most significant conclusions that the report throws is the fact that many people have seen how their social skills declined after quarantine. This does not refer exclusively to the fact that since then many have found it difficult to maintain contact with their loved ones or strangers, but that "The isolation has served to highlight the drama of loneliness, which affects many people."

There are people who have been very sick and, despite being cured, have a trauma from what happened to them

In this sense, San Román points out that "someone who is open to life, who has a good social network and has valuable friends, could more easily adapt to the situation of confinement, while those who already had sociability problems have now worsened ". After all, "one of the most important aspects of caring for mental health is having strong, positive relationships." Human beings "get in tune by talking to other people, we resolve our lives in relation to others, we are not going for free, the level of interdependence of the human species is absolute". Hence, many people have noticed an increase in the feeling of loneliness, especially those who "did not cope well with individual loneliness beforehand, as well as boredom or lack of activity," says the psychologist.

Win the duel

Many of these registered psychological consultations were not aimed at solving or treating a mental disorder or illness. Many also increased with regard to the mourning process, which San Román defines as "something natural to which the human being is inevitably doomed at some point in his life". Similarly, it does not always refer to the loss of a loved one, "although they also increased very significantly", but rather because many people lost their jobs or a partner with whom they had been in a relationship for a long time.

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"It is not a mental disorder," says the psychologist. "Another thing is that over time it ends up becoming complicated and leading to depression or trauma. That can happen after a long time, but 'a priori' it should not be treated as if it were a problem, but as one more stage of the life". San Román recalls that many people who suffered from the coronavirus in a serious way and are now cured may also experience symptoms similar to mourning, which in this case would be due to loss of health, either temporary or with sequelae. "There are people who have been very sick and despite being cured they have a trauma from what happened to them," he asserts.

Tips to alleviate anxiety

In these times of so much uncertainty for the future, it is worth adopting certain habits or routines to reduce the possibility that the situation will take its toll on us more than usual on a psychological level. Therefore, as San Román said, it is very important to preserve the personal and friendship relationships that we grow, despite the fact that it is still recommended to stay at home to stop the spread of the virus. Similarly, "you have to take good care of your diet and sleep habits, betting on a healthy diet and away from substances such as alcohol." And, finally, it is also recommended to do physical activity on a regular basis, since the body releases dopamine, a hormone that will make us feel more relaxed and live from day to day, without looking so much towards the future.