How to look after your mental health during the coronavirus lockdown - according to the NHS
Since its outbreak, the Covid-19 pandemic has turned so many lives upside down.
With all non-essential shops, schools and public services shutting up shop due to the illness, lockdown is a worrying time for many.
The NHS is providing support and advice for families to look after themselves during these unprecedented circumstances.
Here are some of the service’s top tips for looking after your mental health.
*Make sure you stay connected
Keeping healthy relationships with people you trust is important, especially if you are living alone.
Think about how you can stay in touch with family and friends without needing to meet them in person.
You could try phone calls, video chats or social media to share what you have been doing during the lockdown.
*Talk to someone about your worries
We are living in unprecedented times and it is normal to feel worried or scared.
Try and share your worries with others you trust – doing so may also help them too.
If you cannot speak to someone or you think you need further help, a list of NHS helplines can be found here.
*Look after your physical health
Taking care of your body can have a big impact on how we feel mentally.
Try to maintain a balanced diet, drink enough water and exercise regularly.
Under the current lockdown restrictions, you can leave your house for one form of exercise a day.
If you are member of a gym, see if they are providing online workouts for at home.
*Do activities you enjoy
When we are feeling worried, we may stop doing things we usually enjoy.
Try and focus on your favourite hobby or come up with a new one as a way to relax.
*Stick to trusted sources for information
Find a credible source you can trust for information on the ongoing crisis.
Websites such as Gov.uk or the NHS website will be able to provide you with the latest details.
Remember, not all information shared on social media is correct.
If you are worried, you may also want to consider limiting how much time you spend watching, reading or listening to coverage about coronavirus.
*Make sure you get enough sleep
Getting a good amount of sleep can make a big difference to how we feel both mentally and physically.
Try and stick to regular sleeping patterns and keep up good practices before you go to bed.
Avoiding screens, caffeine and creating a restful environment could all go a long way.
*Keep on top of difficult feelings
Try to focus on things you can control, rather than things you have no influence over.
Spend time controlling your behaviour, who you speak to and where you get information from.
Of course, acknowledge things are happening around the world but remember they are not in your control – if this is causing anxiety or worries then try to avoid it.
For more tips on improving your mental health during the coronavirus pandemic, click here.