Role of Telehealth In Dealing With Covid 19 Related Anxiety (Even After The Pandemic)

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Role of Telehealth In Dealing With Covid 19 Related Anxiety (Even After The Pandemic)

The COVID 19 pandemic has brought about unprecedented levels of anxiety and stress for individuals worldwide. In this challenging time, telehealth has emerged as a valuable resource in addressing and managing this condition. 

Telehealth platforms and services have made significant contributions to mental health support. Such became possible as it provided accessible and convenient avenues for individuals to seek help and cope with pandemic-related stress. 

Signs of Post Covid 19 Anxiety  

COVID 19 anxiety refers to the specific anxiety and distress experienced by individuals due to the pandemic. Here are some signs of COVID 19 anxiety: 

Excessive Worry about COVID-19 

Involves persistent and intrusive thoughts or excessive worry about contracting the virus. There is also an intense concern about spreading it to others. Someone may also stress about the overall impact of the pandemic on personal health and well-being. 

Fear of Social Interactions 

Anxious feelings or avoidance of social interactions, crowded places, or situations that may increase the risk of COVID-19 transmission. This can include avoiding gatherings, public transportation, or even leaving the house altogether. Unfortunately, many still avoid these situations even now when Covid 19 is no longer a cause for emergency. 

Health Anxiety

Heightened concerns about personal health, constantly monitoring for symptoms, and excessively seeking reassurance or checking for signs of illness. Even when the pandemic is almost over, some sufferers still worry too much about these factors. As a result, it significantly affects their daily lives.

Increased Hypervigilance

Constantly being on high alert for potential COVID 19 threats even when it is no longer a major threat. These are the likes of closely monitoring news updates, frequently sanitising hands or objects, and maintaining excessive cleanliness. 

Sleep Disturbances

Difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep, or experiencing vivid and disturbing dreams related to COVID 19. 

Physical Symptoms 

Experiencing physical symptoms such as:  

–      increased heart rate, 

–      shortness of breath, 

–      chest tightness, 

–      muscle tension, 

–      headaches, or 

–      gastrointestinal issues 

Impact on Daily Functioning 

Someone may have the persistent feeling of being overwhelmed. They sometimes find it difficult to concentrate. Others also still experience changes in appetite or weight or have challenges in performing daily tasks or responsibilities.  

Contributions of Telehealth in Managing Covid 19 anxiety 

Remote Mental Health Counseling and Therapy 

One of the key contributions of telehealth in dealing with COVID-19 anxiety is the provision of remote mental health counseling and therapy. Through video conferencing, individuals can connect with mental health professionals and receive support and guidance. They are also given some coping strategies for managing anxiety and stress related to the pandemic. Telehealth platforms enable regular therapy sessions and ensure that individuals have continued access to mental health services.  

Psycho-education 

Health partners in telehealth have also facilitated psycho-education and the dissemination of accurate information to effectively manage anxiety. Mental health professionals can use telehealth platforms to provide educational resources. They use these to give out tips for maintaining emotional well-being even after such trying times. Through virtual sessions, relaxation exercises and strategies for self-care are seamlessly provided. 

Monitoring of Mental Health Progress 

Telemedicine services have further contributed to addressing COVID 19 anxiety by ensuring continuity of care for individuals with pre-existing mental health conditions. Such is possible as it enables healthcare providers to remotely monitor the progress and well-being of patients. This allows for timely intervention and support, if there is a need for further steps. Remote monitoring devices, such as wearables and apps, can track vital signs, sleep patterns, and other indicators of mental health. These then provide valuable data to inform treatment decisions and personalised interventions. 

Increased access to services 

Telehealth after-hours eliminates barriers such as geographical distance, transportation challenges, and limited availability of mental health providers. This gives individuals the right to seek mental health support regardless of their location. Such is particularly important even after the pandemic, as many individuals still face limited traveling means due to poor road conditions and mismanaged transport systems.

Safety and comfort 

Furthermore, telehealth for anxiety offers a sense of safety and comfort for individuals dealing with COVID 19 anxiety. Many people may feel more at ease discussing their concerns from the privacy of their own homes rather than in a clinical setting. This increased comfort can enhance the therapeutic relationship. Furthermore, it can encourage individuals to be more open about their anxieties which leads to more effective treatment outcomes.

In conclusion 

Telehealth has made significant contributions in addressing and managing COVID 19 anxiety. By offering this technological support, it continues to play a crucial role in promoting the emotional well-being of everyone. Also, it strives to help individuals cope with the psychological impact of the crisis even after the pandemic.