Ohio University

Psychological tips for managing coronavirus concerns

Published: March 16, 2020 Author: Alaina Bartel

If you are feeling overwhelmed by the constant news and alerts regarding COVID-19, there are steps you can take to help you manage your psychological distress, according to Ohio University’s Counseling and Psychological Services. 

Recognizing the signs of increased mental and emotional distress is important: 

• Increased anxiety, worry, fear and/or feelings of being overwhelmed.
• Persistent depressive symptoms such as sadness, tearfulness, and/or loss of interest.
• Feelings of hopelessness and/or paralyzing fear about the future.
• Sleep difficulties.
• Isolating self from others.
• Thoughts about death, dying, and/or suicide.
• Unhealthy coping (substance abuse, self-injury, engaging in risky behaviors.

If you are experiencing any of the above, keep in mind these psychological health tips

  1. Acknowledge your feelings and emotions. Allow yourself time to reflect on your feelings and how you are reacting or coping to the distress.
  2. Maintain your normal day-to-day activities.
  3. Seek accurate information from credible news sources (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html or https://coronavirus.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/covid-19/). 
  4. Limit your exposure to social media reporting.
  5. Follow protections and prevention tips provided by qualified medical professionals, including Ohio University’s Campus Care.
  6. Practice self-care (eat, sleep, and exercise) and calming techniques (for example: yoga, reading, breathing, mindfulness, meditation).
  7. Seek out support and campus resources. Reach out to family and friends as well as campus resources for opportunities to share and talk about your concerns especially if your distress is not lessening.

For more information about managing and coping with stress and anxiety regarding COVID-19, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website. To seek services or to speak with a counselor at Ohio University’s Counseling and Psychological Services, please call 740-593-1616. Limited drop in services are available, please call before stopping by.