NEW ORLEANS — As most Americans practice social distancing and stay at home this Easter weekend, they’re experiencing a new kind of isolation, and that isolation may have an effect on mental health.
LSU Clinical Psychologist Dr. Joy Osofsky said isolation may change the way people live their day to day lives, disrupting their mental health.
“What we can see from health kinds of problems is difficulty sleeping, not eating properly — if we are supposed to take certain medications, we may forget to take the medications,” Dr. Osofskty said. “Also, exercise. Being able to move around is important, so if you are staying at home you may not be able to do all these things.”
Dr. Osofsky said socializing is also another important part of mental health that is challenged while people are isolated.
“Exercising is one thing but connecting with people is another thing,” Osofsky said during a remote interview. “Fortunately, we have media like we are using right now to connect to people, being able to make arrangements, to talk to people, friends, even getting together on the telephone."
The psychologist advises people to continue getting slices of life in healthy doses.
“One of the things we know is very important for health is being able to schedule our activities in some way, being able to get enough sleep, being able to eat properly,” She said. “Also, interaction with other people is really important, and with social distancing and stay at home orders we need to really think about making an effort to do that."