What is pandemic fatigue, how to cope with it

Quarantine Fatigue Is Real—these Are The Symptoms
Posted at 10:41 PM, Nov 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-17 03:04:11-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.  — We have been in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic for more than eight months now and many people are facing additional stress from something called Pandemic Fatigue, where you feel mentally and emotionally burnt out from the virus.

23ABC spoke with the Kern Behavioral Health Department and they say their services are up due to the toll the pandemic is taking on people mentally, that's why things like proper exercise and a good diet are something we all should be focusing on right now.

"When we think about fatigue you have to think about what makes people tired and stress is the big pusher when it comes to COVID fatigue. Especially the straws of the unknown," said Director of Kern Behavioral Services, Bill Walker.

That unknown is causing lots of issues for many people, according to a study released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, it states that during late June, 40% of U.S.adults reported struggling with mental health, substance abuse, and suicidal thoughts. Kern behavioral health shares some signs that you may be experiencing pandemic fatigue, although many experience other signs.

"It looks like a pendulum swing and a lot of signs of depression with the inability to sleep or I can't stop. The inability to eat is a sign of anxiety or I keep turning to food and drink or other things. The common thread there is that it's out of balance," said Walker.

Bill walker with Kern behavioral Services says pandemic fatigue takes place when individuals become frustrated with the prolonged safety measures put into place but ignoring these necessary measures could be deadly and prolong the pandemic.

"I know it's tiring keeping up the effort and not seeing your relatives and friends, but we did make an impact. We did flatten the curve. We don't talk about that enough our hospitals remained healthy and we flatten the curve. We did what we needed to do and it made a difference, now we are faced with a similar challenge," said Matthew Constantine, director of Public Health Services.

Some tips to to cope with pandemic fatigue is to make sure you're getting enough sleep, maintaining a healthy diet, and to not be too hard on yourself.

"Give yourself a break and give yourself self-tolerance. You can't meet every need that comes at you and you can't deal with every problem and it's not the end of the world and set your own limits so that they can maintain their diligence."

Another great stress reliever is incorporating exercise into your daily routine, doing things like this is essential because the pandemic will be around for the foreseeable future

"This is a long race, not a sprint."

Kern Behavioral Health adds that they have a hot line available for anyone who is in need to talk.

The number is (844) 863-7002.