Expert reveals a 90% surge in calls to tackle the problem & reveals the tell-tale signs and how to relieve symptoms
Aaron Surtees, a leading Psychologist and Celebrity Hypnotherapist based in London, said the Covid-19 crisis has led to a 90% surge in calls to his clinic from people suffering from “pandemic anxiety”.
Mr Surtees who heads up clinic City Hypnosis and is the UK’s most recommended Expert said: ‘Since restrictions have been eased and normal life has resumed, we are seeing a huge upward spike in cases of “pandemic anxiety”.
This vicious cycle keeps bringing us back to the high stress levels we were experiencing during the height of the pandemic in 2020’.
‘The pandemic has seemingly woken up previously dormant anxiety conditions or exacerbated chronic and long-standing anxiety which is having a huge impact on people post lockdown. Health anxiety has understandably risen 90% on pre- pandemic levels and many people are suffering in silence’.
He adds: ‘Worryingly comorbidity, the presence of one or more additional conditions with a primary condition, has also greatly increased’.
‘In particular, the number of patients seeking alcohol binge treatment with increased anxiety as a side effect of their excessive drinking has quadrupled. I am treating patients with a complex mix of conditions which require a range of tailored treatment plans’.
‘The amount of people struggling with depression is also a big concern. I have noticed that depression has increased proportionately alongside increased anxiety levels.’
He says that the NHS has de-prioritised mental health over physical health during the pandemic and people are seeking private treatments and help because waiting lists are too high: ‘Waiting lists for psychotherapy and cognitive behavioural therapy appointments are in many cases 12 months long. Government spending in these areas has not increased anywhere near the levels it needs to. Patients in need of treatment need to see a specialist urgently, as soon as they need to’.
The key tell-tale signs of pandemic anxiety according to Aaron Surtees include:
Increased sense of doom – Do you have a sense of never-ending doom?
Sudden change in habits – Are you drinking more? Are you eating more or less? Have you picked up a new or old bad habit recently, such as, biting your nails or grinding your teeth?
Physical changes to your body – Are you sweating more in the daytime or at night? Are you waking up suddenly with a shortness of breath during the night-time? Are you experiencing regular nightmares?
Fatigue – Are you feeling weak or tired all of the time and unable to focus properly on tasks during the day?
Your breathing – Are you breathing more rapidly, or do you have palpitations? Do you find it difficult to calm yourself down at night before bed?
Thirsty – Are you subconsciously worried and thus forgetting to look after yourself properly? One of the first things I notice is people forget to drink enough water.
Unable to relax – Are you struggling to enjoy yourself? Whether it be that you are unable to relax and enjoy a movie/TV programme or feel distracted and disengaged with friends and family?
Aaron’s top 3 tips to boost your mental health post pandemic:
Having the time to relax and do nothing is vital to our wellbeing. Everyone over the past few months has been eager to make plans and go out after over 12 months of restrictions and lockdowns. Tired of doing nothing but now the nothing is a vital way to unwind and relax your mind.
CHANGE YOUR SCHEDULE
Talk to your boss and tell them what’s going on. Talk to them about ways you can improve and switch up your work routine or role. Potentially ask for some mental health days off work. Ask for different responsibilities or plan an internal move if you feel that will boost your morale and wellbeing.
ACCEPT THINGS ARE BEYOND YOUR CONTROL
Take a note of how you are feeling on a regular basis. Don’t do anything drastic and take each day as it comes. Prolonged stress can cause all sorts of issues which you want to avoid. Try a little meditation to de-stress using soft breathing techniques to calm your mind and body. Accept that these are still anxious, uncertain times that are beyond your control and try to visualise hope for the future by thinking positively.
For more information visit www.cityhypnosis.com