Mental health is defined by WHO as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and can contribute to her or his community.
Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress and make choices.
Thousands of people with mental health conditions around the world are deprived of their human rights.
Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
The factors that contribute to mental health problems include:
- biological factors, such as genes, family history of mental health problems, and
- life experiences, such as trauma or abuse.
Infectious disease outbreaks such as ongoing COVID-19, as well as other public health events, can cause emotional distress and anxiety, which affects our mental health.
Secondary consequences of the COVID-19, such as social isolation, economic stress, and barriers to mental health treatment, increase the risk of “suicide.” Research shows that globally healthcare professionals are at an increased risk for suicide as they are serving in the frontlines against COVID-19, which concerns infection, exposure of family members, sick colleagues, shortages of necessary personal protective equipment, and work stress.
Here are some coping tips needed to balance the mental health of every individual, especially during this pandemic:
- Set a limit on media consumption, including social media and local or national news
- Make sure to get enough sleep and rest
- Eat healthy foods and stay active
- Connect with loved ones and others who may be experiencing stress about the outbreak over a phone call or video call, especially with individuals with substantial risk factors for suicide
- Get accurate health information from reputable sources. For health information about COVID-19, please contact the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.
In this fast-pacing world, mental stress and health problems are common. Once people with mental stress learn to cope with the situation, they can get better, and in most cases, many recovers completely.