If you are like me, the current situation with the COVID-19 pandemic is bringing you feelings of anxiety, isolation, and uncertainty unlike anything you have experienced. Even in the absence of underlying or previous mental illness, the challenges we as a nation and society face can cause generalized anxiety and depression. If you already have a history of depression or anxiety, your symptoms may be worsened by the mandatory shelter-in-place orders, job insecurity, financial stress, and added isolation. We are seeing that the population as a whole is experiencing pressures that will undoubtedly tax our mental health for the unforeseeable future. So what can you do to address this?
First of all, do your best to maintain a routine that will support your mental, physical, emotional, and social health. Try to exercise regularly and even though most residential and commercial gyms are closed at the time, you can always take a brisk walk or run while adhering to social distancing guidelines. Alternatively take advantage of the surge in online and live streaming exercise sessions that you can do in the comfort of your living room. Set a schedule so that you are doing at least 30 minutes of exercise three or more times a week. The exhilaration, feeling of accomplishment, and surge in endorphins are all beneficial for mood.
Although social gatherings in groups is prohibited, there are many ways to keep in touch with family and friends thanks to technology. And if getting on an old-fashioned phone call isn’t enough, try using Facetime or Zoom to video chat with your best friend or even with a large group all at once. Although there is no substitute for a dinner party or happy hour, we are fortunate to live in times that allow such social interaction via technology.
When it comes to your mental health, first and foremost follow the recommendations set forth by your psychiatrist or mental health provider. Although most doctors and therapists are moving to a telemedicine model of care, this can be quite effective, and you can have very productive sessions from your home. Continue taking your medications and if your symptoms are worsened by the pandemic, contact your doctor for an evaluation and/or adjustment. Try to keep only positive influences around you and don’t let the negative energy of others bring you down. And remember that we will get through this! It may be many weeks or months, and will involve sacrifice and stress, but we will return to normalcy, so think positively to your best ability.
Our clinic will remain open during the pandemic and shelter-in-place. The American Society of Ketamine Physicians, of which IV Solutions is a member, has deemed ketamine treatment an essential service in these times of added stress, anxiety, isolation, and uncertainty. We are following all CDC guidelines and precautions for disinfecting and cleanliness and our private rooms ensure social distancing. Patients are screened carefully before appointments. If ketamine is a potential option for you, please contact us and we will evaluate and coordinate your care with a free phone consultation.
Please be safe, stay healthy, and take the time to thank our health care workers and doctors for the huge sacrifices they are making during this time. Life will move on for most, but for many it will be changed forever by COVID-19.
IV Solutions and Ketamine Centers is located at 300 Village Green Road, Suite 225 in Lincolnshire and at 712 N. Dearborn Street in Chicago. For more information, call 844-9-IV-MEDS (948-6337) or visit chicagoivsolution.com or ketaminechicago.com to watch and listen to our many patient testimonials, news, and radio stories.