Coronaphobia, a new phobia?
A survey carried out last week showed that 61% of UK residents would be nervous about socialising in bars and restaurants, even when the lockdown restrictions are lifted, so could this statistic tell us all something about a changed view that we all now hold.
Anxiety could continue for years in the wider community
It looks like there is anxiety within UK population, with more than a quarter saying lockdown should not be eased currently.
Neighbours are reporting neighbours for breaking the lockdown, people are being challenged in the street by complete strangers if they appear to be in a large group of people, even if that group may actually be family members. All of these events can contribute to stress and general anxiety in society, we are all a bit more on edge.
The Government know they have to win over the public to get the economy moving again and bring us all back to some version of normality, although it could be argued by some of us, that the previous normal isn’t somewhere we all want to return to in a rush.
Why are people anxious?
A question being asked is, has the 'social distancing' communications strategy worked too well and could this be why people are now anxious about leaving the house.
The message to stay at home has really hit home for some people and there now needs to be a strong message to go out again, when that time comes. This is where the problem occurs. Some people in society have been so frightened into staying home during the lockdown from the messages, TV Adverts, etc that were distributed by the Government, that there is a risk that some of us have been institutionalised and are now afraid to leave our homes. For some of us, becoming institutionalised, can happen incredibly quickly and staying at home has become the new normal for many of us.
So, what is Coronaphobia?
We've all seen people wearing masks, carrying hand sanitiser and avoiding others in public, for fear of contracting Covid 19. These measures have been fairly effective at controlling the spread of the virus, especially for the most vulnerable in society, but there will come a point when we all need to go back to work, visit friends and family, etc and that's when problems can occur for some of us in society. Those of us who can't let go of these rituals and continue to follow the guidelines, even when lockdown has been relaxed and infection rates, are much lower and almost non-existent, may find our anxiety rising when faced with the prospect of having to let go of these behaviours. Some of us will find it harder to return to life and there will still be anxious thoughts about Covid 19 and a possible return of the virus when the flu season returns later in the year. A new term has been coined to describe this behaviour, Coronaphobia. And before we all dismiss this as yet another phobia, think for one moment that to the sufferer, all phobias are very real.
What can we do about it?
As with all phobias, there is a hope and there are methods we can use, to manage the symptoms of Coronaphobia. Phobias generally develop as a result of a long term anxiety that has been left unchecked, so a phobia doesn't just appear out of the blue. Phobias can all be treated in a very similar way, by using relaxation techniques and rationalising irrational thoughts, to restore some balance back to life. Meditation is also a great tool for calming a busy mind, this alone can help anxious thoughts.
If you'd like to talk about on-line sessions then get in touch for an informal chat and we can talk about your hypnotherapy needs. Take care x