The pandemic continues to impact people’s mental health

Tips on how to deal with your mental health.
Published: Oct. 22, 2020 at 5:10 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) -The pandemic continues to impact people’s mental health, and now, with the colder weather, some may start experiencing Seasonal affective disorder on top of that.

The uncertainty of the pandemic brings along added stress.

“Are people stressed? Yes, and I think part of it is the stress is unrelenting because it’s continuing to happen with the pandemic. People having to clean their hands, having to make sure their environment is clean, and wearing masks, those types of things,” says Dr. Kari Scovel, a licensed psychologist for Scovel Psychological and Counseling Services.

With the colder weather and snow hitting the Black Hills, this could lead to Seasonal affective disorder.

“Feeling more gloomy than normal when there is less light. People feel down, lethargic, not having a lot of energy. Also, just not having a lot of motivation to do things,” says Scovel.

Many people took to the outdoors to deal with stress while following social distancing, but with the colder weather, some may wonder what to do.

Scovel says it’s important to keep up with activities so when you can go outside, do things like skiing, ice skating and take a walk, but when you can’t get outdoors.

“Spend that quality time with your family. So that’s helpful, but also if you don’t have a lot of hobbies then what do you want to do for a hobby? Find a way to get new hobbies use youtube as maybe a teacher at sometimes, paint, draw, read, do the things you enjoy,” says Scovel.

And when you’re feeling stressed, it’s important to remember.

“You have command over what you do and how you act about the virus, so just know that. That is what you can control. And if you’re worried about what other people are doing, try to just turn that off and focus on yourself and your own mental health,” says Scovel.

If you or someone you know needs help, you can call the National Alliance on Mental Illness at 1-800-273-8255.

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