Yesterday I learned about a condition doctors are starting to talk more and more about called COVID Anxiety Syndrome. Experts say that as the battle against COVID continues to trend in a positive direction and the re-opening process continues to progress, people with the syndrome will have difficulty moving forward with the rest of society. Instead, they will likely continue to cling to safety behaviors that were necessary during the darkest days of the pandemic.
What this means is that a portion of society, perhaps 1 in 5 people according to the articles I read, might resist letting go of COVID coping strategies they practiced pre-vaccine. These folks will most likely avoid crowds of any size, refrain from touching anything, and watch others closely to see if they are displaying any COVID symptoms. They will perform these behaviors in a constant state of worry.
Anyone with basic knowledge of human nature probably won’t find COVID Anxiety Syndrome that surprising. This pandemic has been an extremely traumatic event for many and it is difficult to transition back to a carefree way of life when you are dealing with an invisible enemy, no matter how much the virus has been wounded.
Throughout the past 14 months I have tried to pray for the people paralyzed by fear of the coronavirus just as much as I have prayed for those paralyzed by the actual physical symptoms of the coronavirus. To say that this disease has had just as much of a mental impact on the population as a physical impact is an understatement.
As many of us start to celebrate certain milestones of COVID-19 progress, it is important to remember those who might have a tough time reintegrating into society. Vaccinations can make our bodies immune from the pandemic but not necessarily our minds. Let’s take care of each other. Don’t Blink.