Letter to the Editor: Maintaining Mental and Physical Health Despite COVID-19


Photo courtesy of Raul Gonza|ez on Flickr.

Jovilei Gutierrez, Guest writer

Mental health has become more and more of an important issue that needs to be addressed. With COVID-19 circulating, many people are experiencing stress, anxiety, and depression and it’s worsened for those who already have it.

In an article by The New York Times, Francesca Donner and Corinne Purtill, have a conversation about the stress they have experienced while being under quarantine.

They mention that being lonely can worsen depression, and having feelings of things being out of control can push us to unhealthy coping mechanisms.

In Emma Goldberg’s article, she talks about the “long-haul” effects of COVID on those with and without the virus infection. She mentions that the Center for Disease Control has conducted a study, which showed an increase in anxiety and depression in just a span of three months.

The World Health Organization deems anxiety to be the most common mental disorder, and the CDC states that depression affects about 16 million American adults each year.

With this knowledge, we should be sharing ideas on what we can do to help ourselves and others during the pandemic.

I think it is important to talk to someone about our emotions, whether it be a family member, spouse or friend. There are various help hotlines available, such as the Contra Costa Crisis Center, and mental health experts.

I also believe that physical health goes hand in hand with mental health. Therefore, I suggest doing a few physical activities at home, such as getting out in the sun, walking and yoga.

Eating fruits, vegetables, nuts, eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and drinking tea can help too.

Finding an artistic hobby is another good idea. There are various arts and crafts projects that you can do like painting, drawing, coloring, puzzles and building models. Even entertainment such as reading, watching movies or shows and playing games is a good outlet.

Although these actions aren’t a cure, I believe they help better your life during and after the pandemic.

Jovilei Gutierrez is a student at Diablo Valley College participating in Journalism 110.