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November 20, 2020

COVID Fatigue and how to combat it

Credit: WDVM, Katie Rhee

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — As the nation enters another month of COVID-19, experts say the stress and uncertainty of the pandemic are wreaking havoc on the mental health of Americans.


COVID fatigue is the feeling of restlessness and exhaustion caused by the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams stated that “people are tired and aren’t taking mitigation measures as seriously as before.”


Adam Jablin is a life coach and describes the feeling as fatigue from everything we’ve all been dealing with, the stresses that we’ve never, ever been accustomed to.


“The stress has been unmanageable. And how do most adults deal with stress? Of course, there’s the healthy things you can do, right? Exercise, meditate, journal… That’s not what adults are doing. They’re having a few drinks, they’re having a Xanax, they’re having an Adderall to concentrate, they’re taking Ambien to sleep…. Every single day.”


Maryland Congressman David Trone has been working to help those impacted by addiction and passed two bills unanimously through the House of Representatives this week that work to address the opioid crisis. He has deep personal ties to the matter after losing his nephew to a Fentanyl overdose in 2016. He also stressed that since 2000, there have been over 500,000 thousand deaths from drug-related incidents or overdoses. He explained that the number of drug-related or overdose deaths is double the number of deaths caused by COVID-19. He believes that because there are a number of drug-related deaths every year, it does not get the same attention that COVID-19 deaths receive.


“Whether we’re white, black, or brown, whether we’re Republican, Democrat, or Independent, these are indiscriminate killers that are the top two issues right now in the United States of America. COVID is gonna have a silver bullet. We’re gonna have a vaccine. And it’s gonna happen sooner not later. But there’ll never be a vaccine for addiction.”


Jablin also has a personal tie to the nationwide issue. He has been clean from drugs for 14 years. He agrees with Trone and believes the COVID-19 pandemic has only heightened the opioid crisis. He recommends four tips to help combat COVID fatigue.


“Exercise, share with one person, and start meditating and then if you wanna add a fourth; start journaling. Just take a notebook… Not fingers to keyboard. Pen to paper. Let it literally channel through your arm, these thoughts, these feelings. Get it out of you.”


Both Jablin and Congressman Trone stressed that it is important to seek help if you or a loved one is struggling with COVID fatigue or addiction to seek help and to remember that there is always someone who wants to help you recover.