Psychological implications of quarantine on people.

By: Shalom Adam

On November 17, 2019 the first confirmed case of covid-19 appeared in China. The Chinese government chose to keep the entire situation as silent as they could. Little did they know that one case would soon become the worldwide pandemic that would soon birth terror into the hearts of all those who would be forced into isolation to stay clear of the virus that roams the very streets they had walked on, just weeks before without a care in the world.

There’s no doubt about the fact that due to countries having no option but to slow down all economical activities, imposing a complete lockdown would result in people being forced to stay indoors, making them feel penned in.

Being at home surrounded by your family members can be a challenge of its own as it comes in either the form of a blessing or a curse.

For children, who will be nothing less than thrilled to be able to spend time with their parents and siblings as much as their tiny little hearts desire, a blessing. A child running up to his father, asking him to help him finish the Lego set that had been put off for so long due to dear old dad not having the time, can now be completed!

On the other hand, for adolescents it may be exhausting knowing they’ll be forced to spend time with their family members, a curse.

Since most of us are already well aware of how angsty teenagers can get, them wanting privacy and staying cooped up in their rooms only emerging out of their dens when hunting for food or water would be disrupted when the rest of the family demands “family time”.

Quarantine is an opportunity for families to strengthen their bonds by having the time to engage in various activities together to distract themselves from the boredom quarantine brings.

However, being constantly together might instigate stress and tension between each individual of the said family.

Moving forward, having to stay at home proves to be quite suffocating and can make people really anxious. People who aren’t fond of staying in one place for a long period of time, may find it frustrating having no choice but to endure it.

Decreased outings can result in people finding the environment inside (no matter how many scented candles one is to lit) gloomy. Having said that, people begin to develop symptoms of depression, or the people who were depressed already may find their conditions worsening due to the fact that their environment that they so desperately tried to get away from, is something they can no longer escape.

Moreover, news of the world being slowly brought to its knees causes many to lose hope to the extent of even suicide as one report had stated that Thomas Schäfer died due to attempted suicide after his body was found on train tracks near Wiesbaden because of his “ considerable worries of Covid-19 “. Not many are able to process the drastic turn of events that are taking place in the world we reside in with an optimistic pursuit, neither can we blame them.

Research has shown, that quarantine is accepted wholeheartedly when people are better informed of the situation and the negative implications the virus is to bring. If one is not told how quarantines benefits may in fact save their lives, one has no other option but to panic.

It is much better to inform people about why they need to social distance themselves and keep themselves in quarantine rather than forcing them to do so and expecting them to comply without regards to the psychological implications it may bring. By doing so, people may not feel as helpless, as vulnerable and hopeless as they would if they weren’t informed of the severity of the said circumstances.

We are face to face with a pandemic that is infecting people worldwide, spreading drastically as we speak. Practicing social distancing and quarantine has proved to flatten the curve of the infection, allowing far better care and observation on those that are infected.

However, how fast the virus spreads is in the hands of the people and the people only. It is up to us to use this as an opportunity to come together to tame this pandemic until the authorities come up with a more permanent solution.

We will be fine if we keep our environment clean, we will be fine if we stay calm, we will be fine as long as we’re patient, we will be fine as long as we stay home.

As long as we’re in this together, we’ll be fine.