Coronavirus, also known as (COVID-19), has turned our world upside down with its high rate of global spread and deadly nature among those most at risk. In just 30 days, the disease has spread from a single city to nearly the entire world. Government organizations are declaring emergencies in order to receive aid; misinformation is spreading rapidly across social media; and facts are being shared in an attempt to raise awareness and get people to stay at home. Because this is a new virus, there are many unknowns, which is intensifying the collective fear and panic. For many people, their anxiety is at an all-time high. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to try to find relief and remain calm as you navigate through this unprecedented experience.
First, we’d like to share with you a little about our unique practice and some of the additional measures we’ve taken for staff and patient safety while keeping treatment accessible to you.
There is no cause for concern at our hospital-grade, AAAASF-certified medical facility. We meet the strictest standards of cleanliness and patient safety. Our practice is located within a building occupied by Cedars-Sinai and there are many surgical suites here, so sterilization and the prevention of any illness is taken very seriously within our entire building. Other occupants in the building practice sports medicine (orthopedics), so there are no patients coming here for the diagnosis or treatment of any infectious diseases.
In addition to our everyday health measures, KCLA is adhering to supplementary safety measures. Some of these safety measures include:
- Staff reporting to work only if they are fully healthy and able to do so.
- Requiring patients who do not feel well or who have been around ill people to stay home without penalty if an appointment is canceled/rescheduled.
- Taking the temperature of all staff and patients entering the clinic daily. Anyone with a temperature of 100 degrees or higher will be asked to take paid time off or reschedule their appointment.
- Asking patients not to bring guests into the suite. Drop-offs and pick-ups out front only.
- Increased frequency of disinfecting high-touch items and commonly used surfaces throughout the day with hospital-grade chemicals.
- Wearing surgical masks around patients.
- Practicing social distancing and scheduling so there is at least 6 feet of space between all personnel in the clinic at all times.
- Enabling most of our administrative team to work from home.
- Providing extra hand sanitizer for patients.
Do Your Part
Feeling connected with your community can help to alleviate anxiety. You can do your part to “flatten the curve” by abiding by federal, state, and local mandates that help promote social distancing and slow the spread of COVID-19. Sitting on the couch at home may not feel like you’re doing anything meaningful to help prevent coronavirus from spreading, but you’re saving lives. If the isolation and overall sense of helplessness are taking a toll on your mental health, try to focus on how you’re contributing to the greater good through your actions.
Try Something New
Many people are taking this time in self-quarantine to improve themselves by working out or learning a new skill with online classes. If you’re suffering from an anxiety disorder, now is a great time to focus on your mental health so you can take steps to reduce the symptoms and regain control of your life. You can start with a mental health bullet journal that takes your daily routine and turns it into easy-to-understand data points. It tracks your mood and energy levels, logs specific triggers that affect your mental health, and helps you release negative emotions.
Learn How Anxiety Affects You
Anxiety is common and highly treatable. It’s your body’s automatic fight-or-flight response that is triggered when you feel threatened, under pressure, or are facing a challenging situation. In moderation, it is often useful, helping us stay alert and focused, but when it’s constant or overwhelming, it may have transformed into a debilitating disorder.
Anxiety symptoms may vary from person to person, such as intense anxiety attacks brought on without warning or uncontrollable and intrusive thoughts. Each is uniquely disabling and can illicit an intense fear or worry out of proportion to the situation at hand.
If you’re unsure whether or not you’re suffering from an anxiety disorder, answer some of these questions:
- Do you have feelings of apprehension or dread?
- Are you constantly looking for danger or anticipating the worst?
- Do you have trouble concentrating?
- Are you feeling constantly tense and jumpy?
- Are you constantly irritable?
- Do you feel like your mind’s gone blank?
If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, keep a log of your physical symptoms in your bullet journal, such as:
- Pounding heart
- Inexplicable sweating
- Upset stomach
- Frequent urination or diarrhea
- Shortness of breath
- Inexplicable muscle tension or twitches
- Shaking or trembling
The physical symptoms of anxiety are easily mistakable for a medical illness – especially when coronavirus symptoms match a few of them. Though it’s not the best time to visit your primary care physician, it’s worth a call or telehealth appointment to get a professional opinion. If they confirm that what you’re experiencing could be an anxiety disorder rather than a medical illness, you may find yourself making long-term plans with them to help manage your anxiety. In the short-term however, there are several DIY techniques you can use to minimize worries and fears during your self-quarantine.
How to Manage Your Anxiety in the Midst of Self-Quarantine and “Safer at Home” Measures
- Avoid excessive media exposure. Pick a short window of time each day to keep yourself updated.
- Connect with friends and loved ones through calls/texts/social media.
- Practice self-care by creating a daily routine.
- Focus on only what you can control, such as washing your hands, cleaning surfaces, limiting social interactions, etc.
- Create new relaxation techniques, including breathing exercises, yoga, and meditation.
- Keep yourself busy with books, games, cleaning, etc.
Tips for Managing Anxiety in Children
- Reassure them that they’re safe.
- Let them talk about their worries.
- Share your own coping skills.
- Limit their exposure to news.
- Create a routine with structure.
- Go for walks around the neighborhood.
- Participate in “find the rainbows” by creating a chalk rainbow on the sidewalk or drawing a rainbow and putting it up in your window.
Ketamine Treatments for Anxiety
Here at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles (KCLA), we see the damage caused by untreated depression and suicide and will stick to our resolve when it comes to providing life-saving depression and anxiety treatment. Now, more than ever, we need the strength to persevere through this difficult time.
Treating anxiety is hard to do during the best of times – let alone during a pandemic. It would be a relief if mental health issues took a backseat in times of crisis, but the truth is, you may be feeling even more anxious or depressed right now. That’s why our team of healthcare professionals and dedicated staff at KCLA remain committed to provide you with uninterrupted access to ketamine infusion therapy’s life-saving anxiety treatment.
KCLA has never closed for a single day, other than holidays, since we opened in January of 2014. We’ve endured storms, earthquakes, power outages, flooding, major fires in our area, and many other serious environmental and economic challenges, but none of them have ever deterred us from our mission. We care deeply for every patient and every team member and will not put our people at risk. If we feel the situation changes for the worse, we will be the first to let you know.
If you are scheduled for treatment, please keep your appointments. If you need booster infusions, please schedule them. To schedule a service or to discuss any questions or concerns, please book a phone meeting with our patient care specialists.