The quarantine in Argentina has been more than 50 days and it is key to know how it can affect mental health and learn to carry out day to day in confinement
The quarantine It has displaced citizens around the world. Most of the affected countries due to the pandemic of new coronavirus have taken this measure – sooner or later – with the objective to avoid the largest number of infections and so preserve its population and its health system.
The lockdown it’s a situation that few people -nobody, you could say- they are used to it. Thus, from the declarations of the various governments of the world, each person had to begin to adapt your routine, your daily life, your tasks, your emotions and your habits to the new reality.
How quarantine impacts: physical and mental health
As established, the quarantine It is a necessary measure from the health point of view, but it is absolutely unnatural for most of the human beings that currently inhabit the world.
Being isolated, away from loved ones, work, social life and any element that indicates a certain “normality” It can negatively impact physical and mental health. The stress, anxiety, depressive behaviors, among other disorders, they are some of the main manifestations that can appear as consequence of this reality. Trying to understand how quarantine can affect mental health can make it easier to cope with confinement and that activities can be found to meet that goal.
It is important to note that the stress is a double-sided feeling. On the one hand, “there is a level of stress that involves a certain degree of adrenaline And it is positive, because it puts the body and the mind on alert, “says Lic. Mariana Trocca, specialist in psychoanalysis and Coordinator of Mental Health at Medifé -Red Nacional-. But on the other hand, when that stress is chronify and it continues over time can become a problem. It is at that point that it is necessary to pay attention and of which, according to the Medifé professional, it is necessary to take care of yourself in the coming days.
How can quarantine be dealt with in a healthy way?
Each person goes through the quarantine in a different way, but the reality is that there are no people who escape the affectation that produces a context of these characteristics. “The quarantine produces an effect on relations, about him mood, about him Body“says the professional.
That is why it is important that “the subject makes use of the resources they have to be able to face this situation,” he adds.
How? One of the ways is to try to establish a minimal routine inside the home and of the tasks that everyone must perform there. This routine is a central element in order to organize the day-to-day and keep time busy, something that may seem endless throughout the day.
These habits can be applied to all people who are currently isolated, that is, older adults, families with young children or adolescents, people who live alone of all ages.
“With the children must be bet on the resource of the playful, the game, something that can help them go through this situation and also to understand it “, indicates Lic. Trocca. At the same time, he adds that it is necessary “rreinforce parental responsibility in the care of the boys, just as it is important to explain and give them the opportunity to understand the situation and to be able to go through it “.
In this sense, it considers central “avoid the constant stimulation of television and give them a place for them to ask, say, talk, talk. ” The dialogue is the only way to know how they go through the situation for the little ones and how they can be helped to continue in this process.
On the other hand, those minors school also have their impact fee in this context of isolation that has many of the Argentines incarcerated. It is essential for this group of children to be reminded that the suspension from face-to-face classes does not mean that learning and the school tasks are, that is, they are not holidays. “They are supposed to have a routine to follow and it is important that parents help make it happen, to be able to establish it, “says the professional, who considers this routine necessary to organize the day and regularize activities as much as possible and in an absolutely anomalous situation.
Quarantined physical activity
There are already several weeks that both Argentines Like the citizens Many countries in the world have been transiting the quarantine at home with the objective to prevent the massive contagion of the new strain of coronavirus.
But, as mentioned on other occasions, this measure also has a impact on Health and in the habits of the people who stay, day after day, in their homes.
That is why it is advisable to try to follow a series of Healthy habits, they can help maintain the state of Healthboth physically and mentally during quarantine. At the same time, many of those habits can help spend time, especially in cases of those who cannot work from their homes and to whom the day is likely to extend too long. The eating, exercising, reading, and mind-exercising activities are some of those that make up that list.
What are the best exercises to do at home
The physical activity It is a key element for lead a healthy life, even more so when the person is in quarantine and takes almost a day to day totally sedentary. Keep the active body it is essential to take care of health in moments of almost absolute sedentary lifestyle. Most people barely leave the house to shop and during the day they barely move around. environments of your home. This can have a negative impact on your physical health, since, as stated, the eJercicio is important for the body to function properly.
Therefore, it is advisable to do at least 20 or 30 minutes of physical activity per day. Thus, it will be possible to keep the active organism and generate endorphins. Sport, while allowing you to remain active, will contribute to tire the body, which will directly impact the quality of sleep you have at night. This last point is essential, since rest can be severely affected by quarantine.
In the last days the specialists in sport have spread a series of exercises that can be done at home, in tight spaces and that definitely They are not intended for sports practice. A living room, a balcony or a room can be converted into an ideal setting to do some activity and follow this recommendation.
The griddle is a exercise whose popularity It has grown a lot in recent years. Has many variantes: Side plank, plank with flexion, plank with one hand and plank with one leg raised.
To make a standard ironl, start on the floor, tighten the tummy muscles and proceed to support your own weight on the elbows and the tips of the toes for 15-20 seconds. It is very important that the back remains completely straight, should not curl.
To successfully run this exercise it is necessary stand with your feet together and give a step forward, bending both legs until the back knee almost touches the ground and both knees are bent at 90 degrees; you must change legs with each repetition.
Is a very useful one-sided exercise to develop the strength of legs separately and tone equally on both extremities.
In the event that you are not used to doing this type of exercise, it is recommended start little by little and gradually increase the repetitions. It should startresting my knees on the ground and, as strength is gained, perform them with the body fully raised from the ground, with the feet and hands as the only support.
To perform squats at home during quarantine It is important learn to placer the body in the proper position. It is recommended to stand against the wall to maintain completely straight back and there begin bend your knees.
To make ABS it is necessary lie on the floor and that body is completely horizontal. If you feel any pain or discomfort in the back, they can be performed on a carpet, towel, mat or any element that makes the support point of the back softer.
The feet should not move or rise off the floor when the trunk is raised, like the back it must remain straight. Another important fact: it should not force with the neck; precisely the objective is to tone the abdomen muscles, that is to say that they are the ones who must make the force to lift the body.
I jump to the rope
Although it seems a game for boys, jumping rope is one of the more demanding exercises that can be done aerobically and that can be done at home in times of quarantine and lockdown. It is one of the most effective cardio in limited spaces and to burn calories in a short time. It also helps train reflexes and maintain body balance.
What other habits can help you through the quarantine
In addition to exercise there is serie from habits that can carry on day to day and they can contribute to passing in a more pleasant way and healthy the time of quarantine.
Establish regular sleeping and meal times
When the day inside the home it’s hard to follow certain routines. That is why it is advisable to have a regular schedule for the core activities, how sleep and eat. Respect daily those moments will make the day be more organized and it will allow the body to assimilate this routine, so that it will always start to feel hungry at similar times, just like sleep or tiredness.
It looks like a point similar to the previous one but, although it is related, it is not. It is important have the daily menu organized, so that you can buy everything you need every time you go shopping. In this way, it will be possible to stay longer in the home, respect the quarantine as the authorities indicate, since it will be everything you need to prepare meals and it won’t be necessary to go out constantly.
Increase the contribution of vitamins and minerals
The good nutrition is fundamental so that the body keep healthy and, above all, to maintain high defenses and allow the body to protect itself from any disease that may affect it. That is why a balanced diet is advised and varied during the days of quarantine and lockdown, that for many can look like eternal sundays, which can predispose to feeding improperly.
Don’t forget the sunlight
The sunlight is essential for vitamin D activation, one of the nutrients the body needs to fconnect properly and stay nourished. Although the hot days and sunbathing and tanning days are behind us, the exposure to light solar remains as a important element to which you should dedicate time daily. Specialists point out that it is necessary to expose yourself to the sun at least 10 minutes a day. Thus, vitamin D will be activated and the body will will keep active. At the same time, recent studies indicate that the immune system is strengthened from the increased amount of vitamin C and D, so this is also a reason for expose yourself to sunlight.
Try to keep busy
Being busy, have activitiess, doing things during the day is really necessary to cross the cuarentena The best way possible. Although in many cases it is difficult to find attractive activities within the four walls of the home, it is essential to do so not to fall into boredom and monotony. It is an ideal time to do activities for which you never have time or for which you cannot find the right situation.
Quarantine and sleep quality
According to specialists, the lockdown can affect sleep quality and the total number of hours you sleep.
The people have circadian rhythms that result from adaptation to an environment r24-hour rhythmic and they are produced in the body regulated by certain genes. Most of the physiological and behavioral variables of people present these rhythms, which respond to external signals such as light or darkness.
With the quarantine, then, the brain lacks these signals since, for example, the people don’t follow their usual routines to go to work or are so exposed to sunlight. The brain structure which establishes the biological clock, the so-called suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, is receiving conflicting information and this can cause a negative impact on sleep hygiene.
Further, not being able to get out from home can provoke in some people anxiety and stress, especially when you have a perception of loss of control about life. In these cases, in addition, brain regions are activated, such as an almond-shaped structure called the amygdala, which during the night can interfere with the quality of the dream. Those who go through that situation have even more difficulty sleeping and wake up more at night.
What, then, are the recommended guidelines for good sleep hygiene?
First of all, it is important to always sleep between same hours, that is, falling asleep and waking up at the same time. Although at times it is difficult to reach this routine, especially in times of quarantine, the truth is that it makes the body get used to that cycle and rest better. However, care must be taken not to become obsessed with sleeping well and to do so for a certain number of hours. Both before and during and after quarantine, sleep quality is critical, but when that becomes an obsession it is known as orthosomnia and can be even more damaging than insomnia.
It is also “essential to respect the eight hours of sleep, even if it is something that is repeated all the time, it is really necessary “, assures the Dr. Pablo Ferrero, specialist in sleep medicine. In this sense, it is worth mentioning that sleeping more and less time than those eight hours is pathological, because the body does not rest optimally. Also, it is recommended not to sleep during the course of the day; this means “avoid naps of over 15, 20, 25 minutes at most, “says the specialist.
Particularly in people suffering from insomnia, It is important avoid stimulants, As the alcohol, mate, tea and cigarettes, among others. Although it is a group more sensitive to this type of substance, the truth is that this recommendation targets the entire population, since stimulants themselves affect sleep.
In relation to the physical activity, one of the great companions that many people have found in this quarantine, “it is advisable practice it in the morning, or during the day, but never before sleeping, “says Dr. Pablo Ferrero.
The hours before bedtime They should be quiet, which implies that all the stress should be left out of that situation. This is related to the need for there is a gradual passage from wakefulness to sleep, that is, not to fall asleep abruptly, but to do it through a process. “For this it can be positive to do mindfulness, meditation or yoga, for example since they are relaxing activities that can help you fall asleep “, points out the sleep medicine expert.
The room temperature must be among the 19 and 21 degrees, so that it allows the body to reach a optimal level of rest. “The drastic drop in temperature causes the body to release melatonin, the sleep hormone, which is why a warm shower is recommended before sleeping,” says Dr. Pablo Ferrero. That temperature should also be kept in bed, which should be cool at bedtime.
In the same way, there is another brain structure, the pineal gland, which also intervenes in the brain cycle and that secretes a melatonin that can detect when it’s dark. The objective is to inform the body that it is night and that he should go to sleep to rest and replenish the energy he spent during the day. However, in these days of confinement, the use of cell phones, tablets and computers has grown exponentially (hence the recommendation of the National Communications Authority -ENACOM- on the need to use the internet responsibly). For this release of melatonin to occur, then, it is advisable to avoid the use of mobile devices before going to sleep, because they emit a blue light that sends a contradictory message to the brain.
All this allows us to affirm the need for “all the senses are in unison, that is to say, in the same tune, to be able to reach rest optimally and effectively, “concludes the specialist.
Pros: quarantine in the digital age
Currently humanity is in the moment of greater connectivity. This means that most people have various tools and channels to communicateboth with the outside world and with the global reality, as with other individuals, no matter where they are. Here may be that point in favor of quarantine, that occurs in the digital age.
As explained by Lic. Mariana Trocca, the moment in which you live this pandemic of coronavirus can have a positive impact on the way of going through prevention measures such as quarantine.
“All the tools we have give us a opportunity to get out of isolation; being able to use the cell phone, telephone communications, skype, email, and any other tool that allows contact with the outside is extremely useful for the situation that is being traversed, “he said. In addition to connecting with the outside world, this type of tools also provide the opportunity to “network with others.” This is defined by the specialist, who considers essential not to be left alone – emotionally, not from the physical point of view, of the company- within the reality of quarantine and confinement that will be lived for the next few days -a priori, until May 24, but that could be extended a little more in large urban conglomerates like the City of Buenos Aires-.
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