• Ashburton FP

Keeping Social During Lockdown 👫🏽👯

Humans are social creatures. Unfortunately, the current social distancing laws & coronavirus pandemic has been said to have created a “loneliness epidemic” (1), making even the most introverted of us feeling lonely, isolated and distraught😓

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Whilst being lonely might not seem like a big deal, it can be lethal. Several meta-analyses have found that chronic loneliness can have a greater impact on health than obesity or smoking (1) 🚬☠️

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If you’re feeling this way, it may help to know you are NOT alone.

1 in 4 Australians report feeling lonely (2), and loneliness can affect anyone - from any age group, race, ethnicity & social group. 👩🏻👨🏻‍🦱👵🏽👶🏽👨🏽‍🦳

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But here’s where we can help. 🙏🏽🌟

At Ashburton Family Practice, our approach to healthcare is not simply treating disease as it arises, but preventing it from occurring in the first place. This is why we want to give you some ideas on how you can stop loneliness from occurring, even with the current restrictions in place! 💓🥰

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1. Understand, Acknowledge & Accept the Loneliness - as we mentioned before, loneliness is common and is nothing to feel ashamed about. However, acknowledging that it is affecting you is the first step in being able to do something about it 🕊🌟



2. Reach out to Family & Friends - scroll through your contact list on your phone or other instant messaging apps and check up on your friends’ and family members’ well-being. This will help you feel more connected, social, healthier and engaged 📲👨‍👩‍👦‍👦


3. Connect with Communities & Interest Groups Online - are you interested in a particular TV show, leisure activity, or game? There are many online forums where you can chat to people with the same interests as you, such as Reddit or Facebook Groups 💻📺


4. Find an Online Workout Buddy - kill two birds with one stone. Not only will you make your workouts much more fun, but you’ll be able to catch up with a friend at the same time 🏋🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️


5. Organise a Group Zoom Dinner - you can all dress up, cook your own meals and then sit down and eat together, almost as if you were all seated around the same table 🍽🥘


6. Seek Treatment for any Underlying Mental Health Issues - if your mental state is causing you distress, please please PLEASE book an appointment with one of our doctors so that we may discuss the best way to getting you on the path to feeling better again 👩🏽‍⚕️🏥

REFERENCES:

(1) https://www.vox.com/2020/5/11/21245087/america-loneliness-epidemic-coronavirus-pandemic-together

(2)  https://www.abc.net.au/life/what-to-do-if-you-feel-lonely/10493724

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