The academic from the Department of Psychology ULS refers to the psychological effects that facing COVID-19 can have on people, along with recommendations to take into account during periods of social isolation.
After the arrival of COVID-19 in Chile and the significant increase in cases of infected people, various recommendations have been delivered to prevent their spread, mainly highlighting maintaining a certain social distance and isolation in homes, for a period of at least 14 days. , especially in risk groups such as children or older adults.
However, when following these recommendations, it is important to consider the psychological factor that can be involved in a person staying isolated for this period of time, since it can cause different types of reactions in those who remain in this condition.
That is why the academic from the Department of Psychology at the University of La Serena and Doctor in Psychology, Dr. Susan Galdames, explains the consequences of maintaining a state of isolation in a person. "For adults in general, the effect of being isolated will depend on their personality, on previous lifestyles, since some will feel more comfortable being alone, they will take it as something positive, while others will feel more anxious . The important thing in both cases is to be able to carry out different types of activities and generate a routine in front of them, leaving aside a more passive lifestyle ”.
The professional also indicates that "In young people, it happens that in many cases there is a feeling of invulnerability, that nothing is going to happen to them or could happen to them in this type of case, but the important thing is to become aware of the real risk that exists both for themselves and for the circle they maintain. "
Dr. Galdames explains that although these can be complicated moments in psychological and emotional terms, it is an experience that also generates positive changes in people. “It has been seen that stressful and traumatic events also generate positive changes for the human being; Due to the capabilities we have, we can grow as well. This social shaking is going to relocate our affections and values, and it is going to make us value life in a different way, not complicate ourselves for minor things and also give space for people to show qualities that they did not even suspect ”.
Along with this, he adds that "The human being is a being that adapts and that we are adapting socially, we all have the capacity to adapt even when the change is as abrupt as it is now."
On the other hand, and despite the recommendations, there are a large number of people who are constantly exposed to public spaces due to the different responsibilities they have, mainly work. In this regard, the academic ULS expresses that it is important to face the situation from the perspective of self-care, “We all have ways of dealing with situations and, in this case, for the most emotional people, they will experience it with great anguish, while the people who are more practical give a better course to a stressful situation; however, the challenge for people who are leaving today is to leave with awareness of vulnerability, because it would be easier to deny the situation, as if nothing happened, which is why care measures are required before leaving the home to avoid being in contact with the COVID-19 ”.
In addition, the expert referred to the special care that must be taken into account in the case of risk groups, mainly with older adults, when faced with a period of isolation. "This type of situation generates a feeling of being vulnerable, which can even lead some to close and avoid the situation. Just as there are different personalities, there are different ways of approaching this issue, so there may be some older adults who seek to deny the situation and pretend that nothing happens, versus others who will feel more vulnerable and will seek support. That is why it is important to maintain communication with them, although you cannot carry out a physical communication process, we can use various means to express our affection and company, avoiding that feeling of loneliness in adults ”.
Written by Tomás Rodríguez, DirCom