Students have been hit hard by quarantine. They can’t see their friends, go to school or participate in activities. After losing the activities that structured their lives, students have begun unhealthy coping mechanisms.
These mechanisms manifest as binge eating comfort foods, going on social media binges, staying in bed all day or napping more often. When repeated as a coping strategy, these behaviors can damage students, leaving them feeling depressed and unmotivated.
According to Healthline, “Parents during the pandemic have reported negative changes in their teen’s sleep patterns, withdrawal from family, and aggressive behavior.”
46% of parents reported worse mental health conditions like depression and anxiety since the pandemic began, according to a C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on children’s health.
It can be hard to ditch negative habits, but it is still possible to adopt positive ones. Experts suggest trying to engage in social interactions, maintaining a stable routine, getting fresh air and allowing yourself to take breaks according to Munson Health.
Zoey Olson (sr) stated that in the beginning of quarantine, she struggled with her mental health.
“I went from seeing friends everyday to being almost completely alone, and I didn’t know how to handle it,” Olson said.
After trying out different coping techniques, she found that by channeling her emotions through music, her mental health improved.
“I made different playlists for different moods. I usually tried to listen to happy music when I was feeling sad to try and cheer me up, and it usually works,” Olson said.
Elise Kim (jr) stated that she usually resorted to hanging out with friends as a way to mentally relax, but due to the pandemic she had to find other ways to do so.
“I usually would resort to running as a form of self care and drawing while listening to music,” Kim said.
Kim had to find new ways to relax. As she found those techniques it helped her mental health improve.
A lot of students ave developed bad habits during the pandemic. Sleeping, binging, lounging around in pajamas have become past times that have not helped. Although it may be difficult, it is time to kick the old habits and work towards finding a new happier post pandemic you through healthier techniques.