Q: I am getting so tired of living with this pandemic. I have cabin fever.
I don’t understand why the local government keeps “re-opening” services such as restaurants and bars, then closing them.
Why is it safe in one state and not in another? What about our rights? Why should I have to wear a mask?
It’s so confusing what we can do, and with whom. I want to be able to hang out with my friends again because I’m lonely.
To make matters worse, I’m getting grouchy and irritable with the few people I can spend time with—my family. Too much togetherness is also stressful for me.
A: You are not alone in feeling confused, lonely, and having mood changes.
It is very stressful for everyone to be confined at home and be restricted from doing activities we have taken for granted all our lives.
In my opinion, this pandemic is much bigger than a local government issue—it is a world issue. A global pandemic with an aggressive, highly contagious virus has no politics, it can infect anyone.
Countries around the world experienced an increase in cases when they re-opened after lockdowns. Requiring masks seemed to play an important role in some countries that contained it.
If you get infected with the novel coronavirus, you become contagious before you develop symptoms, and can transmit the virus to anyone you are exposed to. So you can become a public health hazard without even knowing it.
Wearing even a cloth mask offers some protection to other people from your secretions. Some people are infected with the coronavirus and never even develop symptoms. So everyone should wear a mask. It is not a matter of your rights, rather just common sense.
With the virus that causes COVID-19 taking many lives every day, it is common sense to do everything in your power to avoid getting the disease and transmitting it to others. You just don’t know who will develop a deadly infection or who will have serious symptoms continue after the infection.
Don’t think you are immune if you are young. Young people socializing and bringing home the coronavirus to their families is an issue.
California is already one of the hot spots in the US, which has the most cases of any country in the world.
Do your part to stop the spread of COVID-19 before a vaccine or treatment is developed. Nothing has changed in this regard.
- Maintain a social distance of 6 feet from people who are not living with you, preferably outdoors.
- Wear masks when you are out of your house, or even in your house if people who don’t live with you are visiting (including family and friends).
- Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds, or use hand sanitizer until it dries.
- Wash hands thoroughly before and after putting on or removing a cloth mask.
- Avoid crowds. If you must socialize with friends, keep it outdoors, small group, socially distanced, wear masks and have hand sanitizer available.
We are very fortunate to have lovely weather all year round. Do not leave your house if you are sick.
We have all had to change our routines.
It is important to exercise. It is a good opportunity to get outdoors for a walk, yoga or calisthenics.
Develop your hobbies or take up new ones. Socially distanced golf and tennis are available. Try learning to cook healthier recipes, even experiment with a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Organize your house and get rid of things you don’t need.
Call and check in with friends, many of them have more time on their hands for a good conversation. You can use Facetime, Google Duo, or Zoom because seeing their facial expressions makes you feel more connected.
Schedule Zoom dinner parties with friends, or sign up for classes on-line.
Meditation, exercise, dance and many other classes are available. Some classes have participants from all over the world and that’s a unique opportunity.
Some universities are offering free on-line classes.
Take up a musical instrument. Play board games with your family.
If you are really irritable, psychotherapy is also available on-line, as many people are suffering from depression right now, and the incidence of suicide is on the rise.
Unfortunately, domestic violence is also on the rise since people have been confined together for a long time.
Avoid excessive drinking as this makes the matter worse. Notify the police if you are a victim of domestic violence.