Grappling with stress, anxiety of isolation in a post-COVID world

The surge in COVID cases in 2022 has put our world on hold once again, and in doing so added to our anxieties.

Published: 15th February 2022 08:41 AM  |   Last Updated: 15th February 2022 09:09 AM   |  A+A-

Anxiety, COVID anxiety, Depression, Stress

For representational purposes

Express News Service

The surge in COVID cases in 2022 has put our world on hold once again, and in doing so added to our anxieties. The country has been shrouded in uncertainty, as we experience a common fear of the next wave of the virus.

Gurugram resident Nandinie Gupta was one among the many who was worried about a possible COVID infection; she experienced a mild fever and cold on January 3.

In a bid to contain the spread of this virus, Gupta remained in isolation from the next day. This was about the same time when her parents were in Kolkata, which meant Gupta had to fend for herself while taking care of her dog.

A tussle of sorts

Isolation, especially in a world affected by a deadly virus, can be mentally draining. The situation only gets trickier if one also has to manage daily household chores by themselves.

22-year-old Gupta spent the first few days resting, and was out of bed only when she had to step into the kitchen to cook.

The security guards stationed at the entrance of her building stepped forward to help her with groceries and medicines.

“I have already had COVID-19 once. Back then, it felt like a truck rammed into you. This time, the physical symptoms were milder. But you cannot help overthinking when you are alone for so many days,” she shares. 

EXPRESS ILLUSTRATION

Dr Jyoti Kapoor, senior psychiatrist and founder of Manasthali, explains the reason behind magnifying your worries amid isolation, “Sickness is a time when we don’t want to be alone; we want to be taken care of. When you have COVID, your immunity becomes low and there are maximum chances of getting other infections as well. That makes you more stressed out especially if you haven’t met your near and dear ones for quite some time.”

Gurugram-based Aditi Dixit (28) also tested positive at the same time as Gupta.

Dixit, whose family lives in Chhattisgarh, moved to her aunt’s farmhouse in Noida. Even though a domestic worker was able to cook for her, Dixit admits that the week-long period of isolation was taxing.

“Since I had mild symptoms, I would not say that the recovery was draining me out. However, living alone was frustrating in every way,” she recalls. 

During times like these, managing daily tasks while taking a high dose of medication poses yet another problem.

“There were days when it was difficult to handle everything. I had an aggressive cough. It would just shake me up from within. The cough syrup made me feel very drowsy,” explains Gupta. 

Scouring for comfort

Seeking solace in friends and family is what keeps one going in times like these. Jayveer Singh (23), a culinary associate at a hotel in Gurugram, was also COVID positive in early January.

While being isolated as a paying guest, Singh admits that the presence of his friends—who were in different rooms but on the same floor—helped him stay calm and stress-free.

“I had seen my friends get the disease and then recover. So, I was certain I’ll be fine soon. My friends helped me with most things, especially food. It was nice to have them around since I couldn’t go back home,” he concludes.



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