Published:  01:14 AM, 29 June 2020

The psychological impact of the COVID-19

The psychological impact of the COVID-19

Lima (pseudonym) (17 years) said "In COVID-19 situation I am going through a lot of frustration because of at first in lockdown situation my father have died. She also said he was only earning member of my family and I am the only child of my parents".

Another story is Helena Begum (Pseudonym) (38 years) said that "I am the head of my family. My husband had died 10 years ago. My family member are 7.I am a NGO worker but at present I have no job and my family  income is now stopped due to COVID-19.Helena begum expresses her feelings with tears , I don't know what to do now".

In COVID-19 situation almost everyone as like Lima and Helena is suffering from different types of psychological stress.  Corona virus (Covid-19) has transformed people from social to isolated human beings for the lockdown and the sudden outbreak.

Nearly 300 million people are suffering from some sort of panic and anxiety disorder in various reasons like that poverty, domestic violence, Child violence. During this Covid-19 pandemic has already killed a big number of people across the Bangladesh and new cases of infected people continue to rise.

This mental health issue triggers serious physical health risks and threat to the people of all ages. Almost all of people around the country are suffering from stressed and nervous due to Covid-19 pandemic fear of being infected and losing loved ones, losing livelihoods, job insecurity, feelings of helplessness etc. It affects on thinking, feelings, and activities along with the coping mechanism for stress.

 Struggles with mental health problems causes to manage daily livelihood challenges. A newly method is bound to adaptation is called social distancing causes long-term stress, anxiety, insecurity, low self-esteem, negativity, frustration and low motivation and overall downfall of mental health. Psychological stress on Covid-19 including Fear and anxiety about the pandemic are causing harmful for everyone.

Receiving mixed up messages from various sources causes the stress, not only but also sharing the real facts and understanding the actual risk also causes the stress. Social activists, television and print media, social media, social workers, religious and political leaders messages should come forward to help in the dissemination of scientifically factual information on Covid-19 among the mass population of Bangladesh.

For instance, the Imams (a Muslim leadership position) of each mosque could play a vital role in fighting this extraordinary crisis in Bangladesh. Together, the media personalities and political and religious leaders could help spread basic knowledge on Covid-19 -related issues to the mass populace, especially the marginalized communities.

Given the high level of illiteracy among the slum and village population, the dissemination of Covid-19 -related basic knowledge would be the key to controlling the spread of the virus.

 Social distancing' and 'work from home', absence of regular socializing are the cofactors to become vulnerable and depressed for those who are engaged with outside work. Women those who are working from home suffering from higher rates of depression and anxiety disorders and absence of supportive relationship with friends, family and well-wishers.

Students are sufferings a lot of due to nonstop staying at home. They are addicting with Television, Social media, Video game causes more vulnerable and demanding and express their irritability and anger abruptly, which ultimately put undue pressure on themselves and to their parents.

To get rid of such kind of stress more attention needs to be paid to mass people;  accessibility to medical resources and the public health service system ,counseling should be needed further strengthened and improved, particularly after reviewing the initial coping and management of the COVID-19 epidemic;

nationwide strategic planning and coordination for psychological first aid (PFA) during major disasters, potentially delivered through telemedicine, should be established and a comprehensive crisis prevention and intervention system including epidemiological monitoring, screening, referral and targeted intervention should be built to reduce psychological distress and prevent further mental health problems. Specially need to each other's empathy to get rid of psychological stress.

Jinnaton Nessa is an Anthropologist and Researcher.

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