Quarantine blues: tips for dealing with depression while in self isolation

By Keaton Yates, Staff Reporter

Quarantine has led a lot of students to fall into depressive episodes now that their schedules have been affected, here are some tips to start feeling better while in isolation.

  1. Get out of bed and get ready as if you were going to class or out with friends.

This may be the hardest step, but it goes a long way. Get yourself out of bed, take a shower, brush your teeth and get ready for the day. Do your makeup if that’s what you’re into. Anything that will make you physically feel better.

  1. Aim for three meals a day.

It’s easy to lose track of time and forget to eat well while quarantined. Make sure you’re getting fulfilling meals and try and have some water or juice, not only soda or junk food!

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If you are having difficulties getting groceries and are still in Carbondale, Frontline Family Ministries has a food pantry open Wednesday 10 a.m to 12 p.m and Sunday starting at 12:30 p.m.

  1. Try and go outside.

Lack of sunlight can affect your mood more than you know. Going on a walk can help because you get sunlight and exercise in. You could also go just sit outside and read or just relax. If you’re not in the position to go outside, try opening your blinds or windows to let natural light in.

  1. Make a list of goals for the day.

These don’t have to be huge goals. It could be simply getting out of bed or drinking a glass of water.

This will help you stay organized. If you have school work, try and do a little every day. Make sure you make a goal to treat yourself!

  1. Clean up your living space.

A cluttered room leads to a cluttered mind. Every time you get up, pick something up and put it away. Making your bed when you wake up makes it even more comfy during bedtime!

It’s also a good idea to do your homework and eat somewhere besides your bedroom if you are able.

  1. Meditation and yoga go a long way.

It may seem silly, but taking a few moments for yourself to stretch and breathe will help you relax and make your depression a little lighter. Take ten minutes to sit and focus on your breathing. You deserve to take care of yourself.

  1. Avoid alcohol or heavy drug use.

Alcohol and even marijuana can act as a depressant. It may make you feel good in the moment, but when you sober up it’ll only make you feel worse. Try distracting yourself by creating art or watching a new Netflix series instead.

  1. Reach out to loved ones.

Talking about it with someone who cares can help a lot, but if that’s hard for you it’s good to just check in with others. We’re living in strange times, keep in touch with your friends. 

  1. Seek medical help if you feel you need it.

Depression can be really hard to deal with on your own. Sometimes, even doing all of these steps doesn’t help that’s when you need to see a doctor. Medication can be scary, but it can balance your brain chemicals. Therapy is also a fantastic idea.

  1. Try and be kind to yourself.

Being in quarantine is actually really hard, it’s not just you. It is completely valid to struggle right now. 

Take care of yourself like you would your best friend or a kid. Make sure you get plenty of rest and bathe regularly. Treat yourself to your favorite ice cream or movie. Do not say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t to someone you love.

Take it one day at a time and know that you’re not alone in this. Try your best to take care of yourself and your mental health. 

Staff reporter Keaton Yates can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @keatsians.

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