Covid-19 Lockdown May Lead to Cabin Fever
Are people prone to show symptoms of cabin fever if
they are confined to longer days on quarantine? The symptoms of cabin fever can
wary from stress to worry or extreme anxiety. They may experience low mood or
depression, irritability or frustration.
Cabin fever is caused by multiple factors such as environmental changes, loss
of control and restrictions in access, physicality and being able to get on with
their daily routines and commitments. People who have pre-existing mental health problems might be more vulnerable.
But it can be hardest felt by active, healthy, outdoorsy individuals, for whom
the physical restrictions are a big change to their pre-existing lifestyle.
Astronauts and submarine pilots may be trained to handle longer days of confinements. They are mentally occupied and task oriented.
Dr Carly Johnco, Macquarie Senior Research Fellow points out that five strategies can help tide over anxiety and depression- have a realistic view of the present pandemic situation and the need to remain confined for public good, maintain good health, hygiene and eating habits, keep alive mentally and physically with yoga, meditations, games and puzzles, connect with friends and family, focus on pleasant and enjoyable activities. Cabin fever is not a diagnosabe mental health condition. Everyone feels worried, annoyed or sad at times, and someone who has been cooped up studying or working all day can feel the same way - but this will often resolve once they stop and go outside and have a cup of tea in the sun or take a walk around the block. With the quarantined group confined for several weeks, most will return to normal life and feel OK fairly quickly, even if they have been distressed in there