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Lockdowns and Mental Health: How are Our Brains Affected?

online counselling sessionCanada has experienced multiple lockdowns because of the global pandemic.

While this is for everyone’s benefit, the mental health of many is negatively affected by COVID isolation. This leads to a cascade of effects that can affect different aspects of a person’s life.

Many people seem to believe that it’s not as important as physical health. This simply isn’t true. Mental health is never an acceptable casualty.

If you feel that the pandemic has impacted your mental well-being, it may be time to seek help.

How Does Isolation Affect Mental Health?

Even before the pandemic, psychologists had already been interested in studying how isolation affects humans.

With lockdown, COVID isolation has become more widespread, and the effects of being away from others are becoming more apparent.

How does isolation negatively affect mental health?

What psychologists have observed is very troubling, especially the cases that happened during COVID lockdown. Among these include the following:

man on laptop in remote counsellingAnxiety

There are different types of anxiety, such as:

  • social anxiety
  • panic disorder
  • and substance-induced anxiety

Some of these types have become much more common as a result of lockdown.

Anxiety has a wide range of unpleasant effects, like excessive worry, inability to think clearly, sleeplessness and more. As such, to minimize these effects on yourself, it is recommended to find a therapist that can help.


Depression also has many problematic effects, the worst of which include:

  • suicidal thoughts
  • self-harm
  • and substance abuse

Depression isn’t something to be taken lightly, so it should be addressed as soon as symptoms appear.

Luckily, remote counselling is a good option for those still in isolation. With remote counselling, you can seek help within the comfort of home.

Aggravation of existing conditions

It’s not just anxiety and depression that become more likely because of COVID isolation.

Existing mental health conditions, like substance abuse, phobias, and bipolar disorder, may have their symptoms intensified.

This aggravation may be because of being alone with thoughts, being away from people, or for other reasons. Regardless of what these are, it’s important to control the symptoms as soon as possible.

Effects on personal relationships

couple in isolation on a dateIsolation and lockdowns can affect personal relationships. This means that you should watch out for any adverse effects on people close to you.

Even though personal relationships aren’t precisely an aspect of mental health, they’re very closely related.

How well (or poorly) your relationships go can affect your mental and emotional well-being.

The effects we mentioned above only scratch the surface of what isolation does. There are others, including the indirect effects on physical health. Since mental and physical health are closely linked, problems with the former issue could lead to other troubling issues.

How Can You Stay Mentally Healthy During Isolation?

Even if you don’t think you’ll be negatively affected, the effects of isolation can sneak up on you.

man exercising to help cope

As such, mental health should be a top priority for you during the lockdowns. You need to take extra steps to ensure your mental well-being.

Some of the things you can do to help yourself stay in top shape mentally are the following:

Relaxing activities

Doing relaxing activities, like meditating, reading, walking, or gardening, can significantly benefit your mental health.

Not only does it give your mind rest, but it also takes your thoughts away from stressful things.

Retaining a sense of normalcy

Do what you can to make your days feel as normal as possible.

Perhaps planning out a routine or returning to old (but healthy) habits can help.

Finding a new hobby

woman finding new hobby in isolationThe best way of steering your mind away from harmful thoughts is by distracting yourself with activities.

Finding new hobbies or activities to enjoy can give you many benefits for your mental and physical health.

Staying physically fit

We mentioned that mental and physical health are closely linked.

As such, you need to make sure that you take care of your body. Eat healthfully, exercise regularly, and stay away from harmful substances.

Stay connected with others

Isolation is one of the root causes of adverse mental health during lockdowns.

To help you feel less alone, be sure to stay connected with friends and family. We’ll talk about this more later on.

If you feel that you can use some help with trying to cope, find a therapist. Remote counselling from the safety of your home can get you the support you need while staying safe.

Why Should You Reach Out During Isolation?

Staying connected with friends and family is tough during times of lockdown.

After all, it’s hard not to physically be with them and do the things you used to do together.

Luckily, we’ve got more than enough resources to help us stay connected even during isolation. Modern technology allows you to stay in contact with all your friends and family.

If anything is weighing down on your mind, be sure to reach out. Even if you’re not physically present, being with loved ones during isolation can greatly benefit mental health. Check on them once in a while to reap all the benefits of socialization during lockdowns.

online counselling sessionHow is Post-Lockdown Anxiety a Problem?

Most of us know that COVID-19 should never be taken lightly.

Some people, however, take this fear a bit farther than others.  This is what happens in post-lockdown anxiety.

Post-lockdown anxiety involves excessive worry even after lockdown restrictions have passed. These worries stem from any of the following:

  • fears of contracting the virus;
  • socializing with others;
  • returning to pre-lockdown arrangements; or
  • reintegration

As a result, people dealing with post-lockdown anxiety have trouble returning to normalcy.

Psychological therapy can also help in dealing with post-lockdown anxiety. If you’re affected, find a therapist that can help. We provide Remote Counselling so you can stay in the safety of your home, while receiving the help you are looking for.

Counselling & Therapy Can Help You Cope with COVID Isolation

The pandemic has raged for more than a year, and many of us are tired as a result.

If you feel that you need help with coping, why not try counselling or therapy? Remote counselling may just be what you need.

Those in Ottawa and across Ontario will find Capital Choice Counselling to be a great option. We have professionals that are experienced in providing the counselling you may be looking for.

Learn more about us here and find your counsellor today!