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Coronavirus Series: Life in the Time of Social Distancing–How to Stay Happy, Healthy, and Productive

July 22 2020 | Blog
  • In this final article of our 4-part coronavirus coverage series, we provide a concise summary of expert advice that will help you and your family take care of your mental and emotional well-being while still taking the common precautionary measures against contracting the novel coronavirus of 2019 and 2020.

    The lockdowns may have ended, but the pandemic is far from over. As the COVID-19 breakout rages on in the US (at the time of writing this article), more than 2,085,000 people across the country have contracted the novel coronavirus. Even as many states are rolling back their initial stay-at-home orders other preventive measures, the disease shows no signs of diminishing. Just in the past few weeks, the number of cases has increased in at least 23 states–including some of those where restrictions on travel, businesses, and social gatherings recently have been largely lifted.

    Both Kentucky and Tennessee authorities have decided to reopen social and business activities to a certain extent. In Kentucky, groups of 10 or fewer may gather for non-essential purposes since May 22nd. The same day, a state-wide travel ban was lifted and some businesses opened at limited capacity. Fitness centers and movie theaters reopened on June 1st. Since June 10th, ​churches, synagogues, mosques, and other houses of worship can resume activities at 50 percent of their pre-pandemic capacities. In Tennessee, similar measures began to be taken as early as the start of May. 

    Of course, after weeks of confinement and sheltering in place, many of us have welcomed this return to normality, relative and partial though it may be. Still, the statistics mentioned above leave no room for doubtthe danger is still there. In addition, the risk of a second wave of coronavirus is more present than ever. That’s why some members of our community–especially the most vulnerable ones including the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions–may still prefer to stay at home and keep social distancing as much as possible. 

    In this blog, the last in our coronavirus coverage series, we present a few helpful ideas that may help you and your family members stay happy, healthy, and productive while taking precautionary measures.

    Watch Your News Intake

    Staying well-informed is crucial, especially during a global pandemic of a novel virus that still has yet to be fully investigated by scientists and the medical community. As our understanding of the disease grows, medical and state guidelines related to issues such as social distancing, the use of face masks, or similar ones may change from time to time. Therefore, it may be beneficial to regularly check the current guidance from trustworthy sources like your local health authorities, the CDC, or even international bodies like the World Health Organization.

    On the other hand, ingesting too much news, or news from sources of dubious reputations, may be counterproductive or even dangerous. In one survey, more than 50 percent of Americans admitted that news caused them stress. Many others who participated in the survey reported that news consumption made them experience anxiety, fatigue, or sleep loss. There is good evidence, then, to presume that too much news during a time as stressful as a global pandemic may be detrimental to one’s mental well-being. If you feel affected in similar ways by your news intake, it may be beneficial to limit yourself to the necessary minimum.

    Stay Connected to Your Loved Ones

    In quite a literal way, loneliness is dangerous. It can result in a higher risk of experiencing detrimental health conditions including high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and a weakened immune system–all of which you’d like to avoid at all cost during this pandemic. In order to keep these additional health risks at bay, then, make an effort to keep in touch with people closest to you, like your family or close friends.

    For those who still need to shelter in place and keep social distancing as much as possible–either for themselves or because a close family member is in a high-risk group–the only viable means of maintaining such connection may be electronic. While social media can help, though, it is important to recognize that unchecked use of our favorite apps may at the same time pose a threat to our well-being.

    For example, according to Forbes magazine, “Social media remains filled with misinformation about the highly infectious coronavirus despite the best efforts to curtail it.” A recent study showed that 1 in 4 YouTube videos about the pandemic contained false or inaccurate information. 

    Keep these statistics in mind. It may be prudent to stay mindful of your social media use and double-check the information that you come across while trying to stay connected to your loved ones.

    Be Proactive in Your Fight Against the Pandemic

    Although reducing the risk of contracting the disease to zero percent is practically impossible, there is still much you can do to lower the personal risk to yourself. Doing so doesn’t even require any radical measures. 

    Rather, much can be achieved by remembering simple everyday actions that any of us can take. For example, here are some practical suggestions:

    • Review and abide by the latest guidance from health authorities–such as these updated guidelines for reducing Covid-19 risk amid eased restrictions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    • Wash your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds
    • Use hand sanitizer in public spaces where it is impossible to wash your hands
    • Avoiding touching your faceespecially your nose, mouth, and eyes
    • Keep a distance of at least 6 feet from other people in public places
    • Stay healthyget enough sleep, exercise, and eat well

    As personal injury lawyers, we care deeply for the safety and well-being of the members of our community. At the same time, we do our utmost to ensure that the legal needs of our current and potential clients are met despite the challenges posed by this pandemic. If you’d like to read more helpful content and learn how the COVID-19 outbreak in your area may affect your personal injury claim, please refer to our previous articles on the subject:

    • Coronavirus Series: How Will the Pandemic Affect My Claim? – Part I
    • Coronavirus Series: How Will the Pandemic Affect My Claim? – Part II
    • Coronavirus Series: Nursing Home Negligence Claims Related to COVID-19

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