The COVID-19 pandemic has been a stressful time, and a lot of people experiencing anxiety and depression might be feeling it for the first time.
Indiana Public Broadcasting’s All In spoke with mental health experts about what these things feel like, why they happen and what can be done to help.
Edward Hirt, a professor of psychological and brain science at Indiana University, says the pandemic has disrupted daily routines and shifted societal standards. With that sense of uncertainty, "it’s really hard for us to maintain a positive outlook and to avoid feeling really, really anxious and depressed.”
Finding a hobby or activity can help people manage anxiety, by giving them a sense of control, he says.
It can take many forms, he adds, "whether that is bonding with other people, whether its physical activity, whether it’s just giving yourself some time to do something that gives you some kind of pleasure and enjoyment. I think we really need to do those kinds of things because it’s so easy to get wrapped up in the uncertainty.”
All In also spoke with Jacek Kolacz of Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute Traumatic Stress Research Consortium, Indiana University psychology professor Beth Trammell and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis kinesiology professor Katie Stanton-Nicholas.