Ms Semra Salik is a Clinical Psychologist and a Mental Health Advocate who has been helping the community with Corona related stress and anxiety through out the covid period.
With the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, different type of behaviors and atitudes of the general population are being observed. Some people have become more careful while others are taking it a bit too casually. To understand the same, we reached out to a professional for the community to take benefit from it.
It feels like most people are taking the second wave rather lightly as compared to the first one. However, there are people who are being extremely cautious this time around. What can you tell us about these behaviors that we can see with the second wave?
Yes, it is indeed very unfortunate. Those who have not yet suffered from Covid, have not seen anyone around them suffer from it have developed a casual attitude towards the pandemic. A certain thinking pattern is observed in such individuals that if it is to happen, it will happen, why waste time worrying about it right now. These kind of people are taking the second wave of corona lightly as compared to the first one. On the other hand, those who have suffered from it or have seen people around them die due to Covid, when they hear about the second wave are now more cautious.
Humans always tend to get used to things or in other words they adapt according to the things happening in their environment. Do you think there are chances that people might just get used to the fact that Covid exists and one can die anytime or we may say thatthiswould make us less sensitive to calamities?
Its human nature that we adapt to the environment in which we live with the passage of time. If we don’t, we humans as a species can’t survive. Adaptation is necessary. Similar is the concept of Herd Immunity.Herd immunity, or community immunity, is when a large part of the population of an area is immune to a specific disease. If enough people are resistant to the cause of a disease, such as a virus or bacteria, it has nowhere to go. Similarly, either we will adapt to the circumstances laid out by the Covid pandemic and learn to live with it or the heard immunity would work out well.
What changes do you believe can already be seen in human nature afterCovid?
We can see a wide spectrum of changes in people around the world in response to covid. We see that people are becoming more sensitive towards health issues, becoming more empathic towards other people and trying their best to understand and comfort eachother. People are taking care of each other and are more conscious about hygiene. During this time, when everything has become uncertain, there are people who are anxious about their future. We see that people are starting to take regulations about Covid and laws in gereral more seriously. Indeed, this pandemic has helped people learn a new life and somehow everyone has enetered a new phase of learning.
People were already informed about COVID’s second wave. Do you think that would have helped them?
Yes, it did help people at aa certain level particularly the awareness part because when Covid first hit the world, nobody knew exactly what it was or knew any precautionary measures to take at that time. Due to the sudden attack of disease, a lot of people suffered and died during the first wave of Covid. On the other hand, this time, as the second wave has approached doctors and practitioners predicted it before hand and awareness and preparedness of the situation was way more than the first wave hence being aware before the emergence of second waves did help initially but with time despite all the awareness people have started to take it casually and the spririt to follow the basic SOPs appears to fade and just recently the rise in number of cases has been noted due to the same reason.
How can people beat stress and anxieties during this pandemic situation?
We all know it is not easy to stay home all the time. Staying happy and stressfree in such a constricting situation is hard. But, there are ways through which we can reduce the stresses and anxieties rising along with this pandemic. Things that can help people in beating stress and reducing anxieties are; having enough information about the measures to take if you or anyone around you is showing symptoms of having Covid, be aware of the fact that this time will pass and life will be back on track soon. The world will adapt. Make a routine for yourself, take a walk outside your home or on the roof for a while. Mindfully follow the SOPs when you’re outside. Be creative with your time and do fun activities with your families. Spend time meaningfully together and make beautiful memories out of this stressful situation. Get plenty of sleep and do exercise regularly to keep yourself fit and healthy.