As more businesses close and schools begin offering classes online to slow the spread of COVID-19, it is also important that individuals do what they can to make these efforts effective.
Keeping to that tune, we wanted this article to be something that does not increase the stress or panic of individuals, but makes them feel more secure in their efforts, and confident in the steps they are taking to keep their family healthy. Here are some things you can be doing during the outbreak to keep yourself safe and comfortable.
Stay informed – but step away when needed
It is important to keep up to date through reliable sources, but that isn’t usually social media. We recommend looking to government websites, health organizations, or even the UNB website, which has many helpful links to resources and information.
Knowing where to look for information will reduce the stress caused by uncertainty or rumors. If tracking information on the virus is increasing stress – step away from your screens and news channels to focus on something else that makes you feel better.
Take care of yourself
While the COVID-19 situation is sure to bring some stress, finding different ways to manage it are key to a comfortable shift in routine. Work may be cancelled, but play doesn’t have to be. Take a nature walk, practice a new hobby, read or write, watch a funny movie, or call loved ones.
It is important to check in on your own well-being as well as others. Talk to your loved ones when you are anxious and discuss your concerns with each other to develop a plan for wellness.
Take care of others
The first thing you can do to take care of others is to keep space and keep up good hygiene. Take the time to remind your friends of positive memories and light conversation.
If you are going out anywhere for supplies or errands, it is a good idea to ask your elderly or immunocompromised friends if you can do anything for them. Even a group of friends who are generally healthy can help each other by alternating runs for errands or groceries.
Be prepared in both items and spirit
Mental preparation and the acquiring of essential items are both important. Take the time now to check that your prescriptions are refilled, and medicine is available to avoid future pharmacy trips, and everything you consider important to have on-hand is available to you.
Other preparation includes making a schedule of important tasks for you, things like online class deadlines and projects, as well as any type of appointment. It is also a good idea to block out your schedule to make time for self-care activities and time with others.
Know your resources
If you show symptoms of the virus and want a diagnosis, contact Telecare (811). Only do so if you are certain you have symptoms. General information about symptoms can be found on the Government of New Brunswick website. There is also an Information Hotline for COVID-19 that you can reach at 1-833-784-4397.
If you are experiencing negative emotions due to the COVID-19 outbreak, there are counselling services in Saint John available at 506-648-5501 or in Fredericton at 506-453-4820.
If you are a UNB student with questions or concerns, you can also contact the UNB Student Health Centre. Saint John: 506-648-5656 Fredericton: 506-453-4837
If you are an International Student, you are also encouraged to contact International Student Services for questions or inquiries about your health/living situation/education. Saint John: 506-648-5618 Fredericton: 506-453-4860
Kreating Conversations is another open outlet for students to speak about their concerns, they can be followed on social media to receive important mental health checks and updates during this potentially stressful time.