Effects of the Pandemic on the Human Psychology and Behavior
Abstract: Specialists in social psychology have published preliminary conclusions on the change in human behavior during the pandemic. But for the conclusions that some measures will be possible, the studies must be carried out on a larger time scale. With the onset of the pandemic, we all needed to adapt to the newly created situation, the newly emerged rules / laws to survive the COVID -19 virus. At the level of primary reaction, our mind knows that something bad is happening, but it cannot identify it, it is practically impossible to make a representation. This fragments our sense of security that is lost along the way. Most of the administrative, professional, political decisions during the quarantine period are the responsibility of the management in the public health system.
Keywords: pandemic; behavior; quarantine; state; emotion; changes
The appearance of the pandemic determined a change in the human behavior of the lifestyle and the reality in which we live. Almost all people were focused on professional activity on professional, social, family success. With the appearance of the pandemic, we all had to adapt to the newly created situation, the new rules / laws to survive the COVID -19 virus.
Specialists in social psychology have published preliminary conclusions on the change in human behavior during the pandemic. But for the conclusions that some measures will be possible, the studies must be carried out on a larger time scale. Speaking of COVID-19 first of all we have the feeling of uncertainty, a state that comes with many other feelings such as: isolation, anxiety, sadness, etc. Everyone around us is experiencing a sense of loss in these times.
There are feelings, states, difficult emotions that we can experience during the pandemic, sadness, disappointment, anger, guilt, frustration or loneliness, which are normal responses during this period, to abnormal conditions. We grieve and experience pain and loss. It is important to take a compassionate approach to ourselves and those around us.
At the level of primary reaction, our mind knows that something bad is happening, but it cannot identify it, it is practically impossible to make a representation. This fragments our sense of security that is lost along the way. We do not realize if this, the loss of security, is experienced by all people or happens only to us.
Certainly, almost everyone feels the same. It is a completely new experience for everyone to manage in their own way, it induces a state of mental discomfort globally, not just individually.
The Most Important Changes Appeared in:
Moral behavior. A first category of altruistic people and a second category of ignorant people appeared. The first category offered their help to vulnerable people, they helped those in difficulty, showing a lot of empathy, compassion, wisdom. The second category, ignorant people did not respect the restrictions, denied the existence of the virus, even asking to be followed by example.
Behavior related to supply. Many people went shopping in excess of “panicking”, emptied the stores, suggesting to other people (children, colleagues, neighbors, relatives), to follow their example.
Avoidance behavior. Following the measures taken by the rulers, rules of social distancing were imposed, in this way social divisions and groups emerged depending on each person's belief / vision on the danger of the pandemic.
In response to the pandemic, social and human solidarity has helped and continues to help overcome this crisis.
For the best possible management of the psychological effects on human behavior caused by the pandemic, the WHO recommended:
Anxiety is normal and information from reliable sources is recommended.
The activities must be diversified, even completed with new ones or some for which we did not have time.
We always have to communicate with close people in our lives.
Discuss sentimental, emotional issues with qualified people in the field, doctors, psychologists, psychotherapists, etc.
By respecting the protection measures, help other people in difficult situations.
The psychological effects of quarantine during the Coronavirus epidemic
Quarantine is defined as: Separating individuals who may have been exposed to an infectious disease from the rest of the population to determine if they are ill and thus reduce the risk of infecting others.
During the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19), quarantine was used as a health strategy to reduce the transmission of the disease. Quarantine efforts have ranged from mass quarantine of large cities to isolation in state-run facilities to self-isolation at home. While quarantine generally serves the public good, it is also associated with psychological challenges for those in quarantine and for people who provide health care to people who care for a very large number of patients.
Most of the administrative, professional, political decisions of the quarantine period are the responsibility of the management in the public health system. These decisions relate in particular to some of the relevant factors for senior public health officials, such as local, state, and health authorities, as they consider their roles in the range of quarantine-related psychological effects.
Quarantine stressors and their psychological consequences can expose individuals to stressors both during and after the quarantine period, with acute and long-term psychological consequences. The effects of quarantine may include symptoms of post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression and responses such as fear, anger / irritability, insomnia, fatigue, detachment and avoidance behaviors, impaired concentration and decreased work performance.
Gathering and using knowledge and expertise: Behavioral health factors in disasters and other extreme events are a very specialized area in behavioral sciences. Public health leaders are encouraged to seek such expertise in their own systems, as well as among academic leaders and other government entities. Once identified, strategies are needed to ensure the integration of their expertise into the decision-making process used by public health leaders.
Monitoring the psychological consequences - the psychological impact varies greatly depending on the nature of the event, the stage of the event, geography and other factors. In addition, these effects frequently change over time depending on the threat and the impact of intervention efforts. Effective monitoring of impact and adaptation of strategies will help ensure that efforts are focused where it is most needed.
These consequences are experienced by various individuals such as those in quarantine, their families, health care providers and others.
Resumption of Activities after the Pandemic
Resuming the lifestyle, after an absence of three months (of changing the rhythm), can be a problem for many people. People are forced to adapt to a new lifestyle for a shorter or longer period of time using a series of protective measures. For some of these measures that require some effort, it can have a psychological impact that can affect their health.
***General Diagnostic Clinic, COJANU Silvia Florina/ 20.05.2020.
***Psychological Effects of Quarantine During the Coronavirus Outbreak: What Public Health Leaders Need to Know, www.CSTSonline.org.
1 Senior Lecturer, PhD, Faculty of Communication and International Relations, Specialization Psychology, Danubius University of Galati, Romania, Address: 3 Galati Blvd., 800654 Galati, Romania, Tel: +40372361102, Fax: +40372361290; Corresponding author: email@example.com.
New Trends in Psychology, Vol. 3, no 1/2021, pp. 89-92