Get rid of the COVID-19 phobia, says expert

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The effects of the second wave of COVID-19 are such that some people become mentally disturbed and behavioral changes are observed in them. Some take the extreme step because they fear there is no escape from the virus, while others seek psychiatric help.

With this in mind, psychiatrists advise people to put aside unfounded fears, adopt established prevention protocols and, if necessary, appropriate treatment on the advice of doctors.

Lack of beds, medicines and oxygen, as well as high hospital costs, lead to anxiety and stress in people.

A B. Tech student last year lives in extreme fear of COVID-19. The boy, who lives with his parents in the city, refuses to leave the house. Family members are well trained and follow all safety standards.

“His parents are concerned that their son is trembling and behaving abnormally,” says Balasubrahmanyam Kovvali, a doctor and specialist in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and counseling, trained in India and the UK

“In an online counseling session, the youngster initially hesitated to speak, but opened up after he felt confident that I would keep the conversation confidential,” says Dr. Balasubrahmanyam.

“The student who is following the social media posts carefully has the impression that there is no escape from the pandemic. He’s also worried about the safety of his parents. He seems to have forgotten that only 2% of COVID-19 patients die. The youngster got over his fears after a few sessions, ”he says.

A 28-year-old man and wife who both worked as software engineers for an MNC in Hyderabad had returned to his parents’ house in Srikakulam district after the first wave last year when they were asked to work from home.

‘Info overdose’

“During my counseling sessions, I discovered that the young man had fed his brain an overdose of information about the pandemic and how it was wiping out people’s lives. After the death of a loved one, he developed anxiety and a COVID phobia, “says Dr. Balasubrahmanyam.

“After the counseling sessions spanned over three weeks, he called me to let me know he had overcome his fears, and he proved it when his parents later tested positive for COVID-19. He isolated his parents in a separate room and took good care of them while taking care of himself and his wife by following all the norms, ”he says.

“There is no need to panic even if you test positive for COVID-19. There is a lot of misinformation circulating on social media that should be treated with caution. Some young people throw caution to the wind when they meet friends and acquaintances. That too can contribute to the spread of the virus, ”says Dr. Balasubrahmanyam.

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