Mental Health Experts Say Return to Normal Post-Pandemic Won't Be Easy for Some

March 18, 2021, 4:57 p.m. ·

CHI Health psychiatrist Jyotsna Ranga on a Zoom conference. (Image from Zoom conference)

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Returning to normal life after the pandemic won’t be easy for some who have gotten used to the seclusion and safety protocols around COVID-19. Now, mental health experts who work with families and children say there are steps you can take to make the transition easier.

Experts warn reintegrating into normal life after more than a year of the pandemic will be hard for some who deal with anxiety and depression. As the COVID numbers continue to fall and more people are vaccinated, more of society will re-open, including schools and job sites and we should be ready for some challenges.

“I think we have to brace for impact,” said Jyotsna Ranga, a psychiatrist with CHI Health. “I think that we are going to see more symptoms of anxiety in students who have had learning losses and what’s that going to look like in the classroom. So, definitely we will see more in terms of stress-related symptomatology, whether that’s depression or anxiety.”

“It’s easy to not be able to see past the mask and see past the pandemic,” said mental health therapist with CHI Health Joe Nelson. “I think it’s important that we don’t let go of what we’ve learned throughout this past year but we also think bigger and we also are intentional in how we rebuild our lives and how we go back to full speed.”

He said one in four people seeking therapy over the past year has come for the first time. He said taking care of mental health will be critical and thinks the next few months will be a good chance to hit the reset button on life and reevaluate what’s important to people.