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Omicron in India: How to deal with anxiety over the new Covid-19 variant

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When the second wave of Covid-19, caused by the Delta variant, began to subside, we began to believe that perhaps this was the end of the prolonged period of uncertainty and anxiety caused by the pandemic. Schools, colleges and offices gradually took over offline and normalcy began to take hold.

However, with the emergence of the new variant of Covid-19 – Omicron – which is touted as more dangerous and transmissible, anxiety and fear of the future is looming again. India reported its first two cases of Omicron in Karnataka yesterday, escalating the already existing panic and distress.

“With huge economic losses, disruptions in educational models, neglect of medical emergencies just as people were trying to get back to normal, the appearance of the Omicron variant can cause anxiety and fear. at people’s Place. Uncertainty about the present and the future can impact coping mechanisms, ”said Dr Neha Dutt, consulting psychologist, Dharamshila Narayana Superspeciailty Hospital, New Delhi.

This sudden emergence of a new variant is sure to evoke mixed emotions, ranging from fear to uncertainty. “Any new unexpected transformation of the situation or the environment causes some uneasiness and affects our patterns of behavior. This can result in increased stress, irritability, drug addiction, anxiety issues, sleep disturbances, etc. Explained Dr Rahul Rai Kakkar, Consultant Psychiatrist, Narayana Superspeciality, Hospital, Gurugram.

This, therefore, calls for immediate attention to one’s mental health to keep negative thoughts, anxiety, and other mental health issues at bay. “It is important to stay meaningfully engaged with work, hobbies, hobbies, to keep in touch with family and friends while taking all necessary precautions,” said Dr Dutt.

If you are feeling anxious with all the developments related to the Omicron variant, follow these tips as suggested by Dr. Kakkar.

Sleep regulation

* Maintain a fixed time to go to bed and wake up.
* Avoid daytime naps.
* Avoid caffeine consumption after 5 p.m.
* Stop screen exposure / phone use after going to bed.
* Do not eat a heavy meal in the evening.
* Don’t drink water right before going to bed.

Management of time

* Set smart goals.
* Make a to-do list.
* Set deadlines.
* Prioritize your tasks.
* Take controlled breaks.
* Practice a decluttering routine.

Ventilate yourself

Share what is making you uncomfortable with someone who is close and trustworthy. A shared problem is a problem divided by two.

Diversion and distraction

Turn away when you are extremely stressed. For example, count backwards from 20 to 10. Also find ways to reduce your distractions when doing high concentration work.

Physical exercises

Our body naturally releases happy hormones if exercise is done on a routine basis.

Limit exposure to news

Limit reading news for updates, to a maximum of two times per day.

“Sometimes it’s hard to come out of the loop of your thinking process on your own, so it is advisable to bring in a professional. Going through a mental health problem is not a sign of weakness, ask for help. It is a sign of strength, ”suggested the expert.

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