As humans we are hard wired to interact with each other, especially in a times of stress. Separation from our family and friends can result in a person feeling lack of emotional support and companionship. This lack of contact can lead to increased anxiety and hinder our ability to cope with the current social isolation that has been recommend by the Government to combat the Corona Virus.
It is clear that our need to be connected is as essential to our health as the air we breathe, and extended periods of social isolation can have a negative impact on our mental and physical health. It can cause changes in our sleeping patterns, appetite and our ability to concentrate becomes greatly impaired. Boredom from being around the same people with limited entertainment can cause stress and make us to turn to alcohol or other substance to alleviate stress or tedium of being isolate.
In a recent statement by the Public Health Agency they asked people who drink alcohol to think about their drinking habits during this period.
Most of the scientific research about human social isolation doesn’t really extol its benefits. We’re social beings, and too much time on your own has been linked with higher levels of stress and anxiety along with increased risk of obesity and mental health issues. But it’s not all bad news. Many people are reporting that they are using this space to give them the freedom to think, and assess what is important to them, while reflecting on their self-being and attitudes towards life, community and family. Families are enjoying more quality time together playing games, learning and having fun. Many families are finding creative ways to connect using this time to make the family unit resilient and strengthening the bonds of family. Many of are saying life will never be the same again. We will come out of this with a different set of life values using this experience to create a new and different future.