Exclusive: How to cope with the death of a loved one during COVID-19 pandemic


New Delhi: The Coronavirus pandemic has prompted a psychological well being disaster throughout the globe. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), a staggering greater than 4 million individuals have misplaced their lives throughout the globe due to novel coronavirus, forsaking bereaved households who’re even unable to say a correct goodbye to their loved ones due to social distancing norms.

The shock of shedding somebody shut to you, your loved ones, buddy, relative, exacerbated with the ache of not having the ability to take part of their final rites typically places people in a scenario the place their psychological well being is affected severely. 

Dr. Sanjeev P. Sahni, famend Psychologist and writer of ‘Let’s Talk About Depression: A Focus on Australia, India and USA’ shares his insights as to how the restrictions on mobility as a result of of the pandemic have elevated the trauma of grieving households and what methods one can undertake whereas speaking to them in order that they’ll deal with it successfully.

1) Sharing Grief: The bodily and social distancing norms in place have elevated the extent of grief one feels after shedding their loved one. Even when somebody shut to you dies we aren’t ready to take part of their final rites and this will increase the extent of our bereavement. Therefore, it’s important to attain out to individuals who have misplaced a loved one – whether or not it’s by a voice and video name and make them know you’re there for them.

2) Identifying individuals: People would possibly certainly hesitate in sharing their grief. In such a state of affairs sure elements will be seemed upon to establish such individuals. If somebody is taking a lot of leaves from work or workplace, attempt to speak to the individual. It is likely to be as a result of he/she is affected by a sure psychological well being situation that originated after shedding somebody shut to them. Even if somebody is coming to workplace, however is both silent or appears deviated from work it may be as a result of of some bereavement. Sometimes individuals would possibly even say issues like ‘ I don’t need to dwell anymore’ or ‘what is the purpose and meaning of living life.’ These statements inform us that this individual is likely to be in dire want of assist.

3) Keep social media utilization and information consumption at bay: It is important to avoid extreme use of social media for someday as it’d carry again reminiscences that will improve the trauma. Also, it’s seen that with a lot of information round COVID – individuals dying and the quantity of COVID circumstances growing globally, such data consumption is dangerous to psychological well being.

Sometimes, family and friends members tag the grieving individual in images to empathize with their loss, however this brings again reminiscences that will once more set off psychological trauma. Therefore, it turns into obligatory to avoid the information and social media for someday.

4) What to Say, What Not to Say: We would possibly really feel a bit hesitant generally whereas speaking to a grieving individual however we must always perceive that it’s obligatory to speak as this would possibly assist the different individual in dealing with the loss of a loved one. Talking is the solely key. Start by asking easy issues like ‘how are you?’ Try to speak to them about the person who they misplaced. This will assist them in sharing issues that they is likely to be fascinated about. Also, if the individual begins speaking, don’t interrupt them or change the topic. Let them speak for so long as they need.

Refrain yourselves from saying issues like ‘you have to forget him/her’ or ‘don’t cry and be sturdy.’ Saying such issues would possibly put the grieving individual in an elevated state of psychological trauma. Rather say phrases like ‘you are always in our prayers’ as such issues present some energy to the grief-stricken individual.

5) Counseling: Counseling and assist teams assist a lot in offering assist to the bereaved individual. Even forming listening circles the place individuals get to speak about their loss, decreases the extent of grief. Grief counseling is one other such step that has seen a sudden rise because it additionally comforts the individual. Even social media can be utilized in an efficient manner. It can be utilized to join to individuals over video calls, have a chat with a buddy when you find yourself feeling low. That is the greatest manner of making the most of social media.

6) Self-Care: It is important that the bereaved individual ought to have interaction in self-care. With the restrictions in place as a result of of lockdown, it is likely to be tough to get again to routine. Try participating in actions that will chill out your thoughts, train a bit or contain your self in some inventive exercise, even in the event you don’t have the urge to do it. 

7) Coping With the Loss: Don’t hesitate from reminding your self that you’re a human being who’s going by a tough section in life. Doing such an exercise will assist you in dealing with the trauma.

Sometimes individuals maintain blaming themselves that they need to have supplied higher care to the deceased individual, or they may have taken extra care. These are methods through which they maintain blaming themselves and improve their trauma.

Keep reminding your self that you simply did no matter you could possibly. However, generally individuals, even after many makes an attempt, are unable to get out of it. That is the time when it’s best to search skilled assist. Don’t hesitate in doing that. It will assist you. 

The struggle towards psychological well being points brought on by COVID-19 is lengthy however with higher well being establishments and palliative care instruments in place, we can be ready to assist households to deal with the trauma of their loved ones a little higher.


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