Thursday, 15 October 2020

British Summer Time Ends - Will Mental Health Issues Increase in these Covid19 times?

Photo by Andrew Neel from Pexels
We are rapidly approaching that time of the year when the clocks go back. Yes, British Summer Time (BST) is about to end and our clocks realign with the sun, noon will be at 1200. Here in the UK, it means that although we gain an hour of light in the morning we lose that all-important after-work light, at least until we get into December, when it gets dark very early.

The long summer evenings will once again become a distant memory and the dream of spring and summer next year starts to enter our minds. The lack of daylight is especially problematic for those who work inside and maybe see little daylight during these darker days. We often hear of those who suffer from SAD, Seasonal Affective Disorder which can be quite mentally debilitating and for some have an effect on their day to day lives. 

When the clocks change at 2 am on Sunday, October 25th and we wake up, yes it will be lighter but as evening approaches we soon realise what has happened with the loss of that hour of daylight. As I write this we are in the COVID19 pandemic, and many are suffering anxiety and mental health issues due to this. Not being able to mix freely and go about our daily lives the way we used to is having a negative impact. I wonder how much worse this will become during the darker months in the northern hemisphere? 

Surely we will all need to keep in mind those with whom we can't physically meet and increase our contact in other ways, such as video calling. This certainly has many benefits over a standard phone call. To be able to see someone seems much better than just hearing alone.

How are you getting on in these COVID19 days? What are you doing to minimise the effects of loneliness and lack of contact in your family and peer groups? Please add a comment in the box below, it would be good to hear from you. 

Thursday, 8 October 2020

Covid-19 - A second wave?


Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

Covid-19 - A second wave?

Here in the UK, the government is becoming very concerned over the rising levels of Covid-19 and increasing hospital admissions. Many are talking about this being a second-wave of the virus. Is this true?

Indeed for this to be a second wave of Covid-19, the virus would have had to have disappeared from our communities to make a reappearance. It hasn't. The virus has been ever-present since it arrived in this country, and whilst due to the lock-down measure taken in the spring, the numbers went down dramatically it was still a threat. As many predicted the easing of lock-down and in some cases too much easing was allowed in England, such as unlimited travel, the case numbers have been rising. 

We had a really hot summer which went on well into September, and this saw masses go to beaches and hold parties in large numbers, ignoring government guidelines. Many people, especially younger adults, became weary of restrictions and took the view (mistakenly) that they can't die from the virus or become very sick. 

What is perhaps another worrying issue with Covid-19 is that it seems catching it might not give immunity in the future. This article in The Evening Standard, Can You Catch Coronavirus Twice is interesting. The common cold is a strain of coronavirus, and we all know that you can catch colds many times within a short period of time. We also know that no one has found a cure for the common cold. 

Stay Safe

It looks as though we will have to learn to live with Covid-19 in our communities for a considerable period of time unless it somehow burns out by itself. Masks, hand sanitisers, social distancing and other precautions will become a very normal part of daily life. If we all play our part, there is every chance we can beat the virus, but it will take conscious effort and self-sacrifice. 

Take care, and stay safe. Look after each other.