• Thought Matters

Mental Health Guidelines in the pandemic

Updated: May 30


A) Sleep Hygiene

B) Social Media Usage

C) Meditation

D) Red Flags


A) Sleep Hygiene- A good night’s sleep and feeling refreshed in the morning is the hallmark of good mental health.


It involves:-

1 Going to bed at a fixed time daily

2 Set up a fixed time for waking up

3 Keep all Gadgets away at least an hour before the fixed bedtime.

4 Daytime naps if required, they should last less than 30 minutes.

5 Meals to be taken atleast 2 hours before bedtime.

6 Avoid caffeine and alcohol 6 hours before bedtime.

7 40 minutes of physical exercise daily.


B) Social Media


1 Avoid watching news in video format, on TV, youtube etc ( As it brings with it visuals, voice intonations and increases the dramatic effect)

2 Read the news ONCE A DAY to keep yourself informed

3 Do not read the news first thing in the morning or last thing before going to bed.

Make it a mid-day activity.

4 Videos, Memes and Forwards on Whatsapp groups refrain from downloading and watching

C) Meditation- 3 minute breaks throughout the day


You don’t have to sit in a particular posture or chant anything. It takes about 3-4 minutes and can be done anywhere.


1 Meditation is for everyone not just people who are stressed.

2 Children as young as 5 years of age can be taught to meditate.

3 It helps in orienting you to the present moment instead of thinking about the past or the future

4 It is ok if you get distracted, or cant stay still.

5 Don’t expect a miracle immediately after the exercise, you will gradually see the benefits


This is the simplest form. Plug in your ear phones for some guided meditation.


In Hindi

https://youtu.be/aTA50nixclQ


In English

https://youtu.be/VzYZTma68UA

D) Red Flags- If the below mentioned symptoms last over 2 weeks- please contact a professional


1 Unrefreshing sleep- Not feeling rested on getting up, rather feeling tired

2 Latency of sleep- Taking more than an hour to fall asleep.

2 Decreased focus and concentration at work or daily activities

3 Thoughts of escape, if persistent

“I wish I could run away somewhere and not have to deal with it”

“ If I die tomorrow it won’t be the worst thing.”

4 Persistent negative thoughts

“Nothing good is going to happen”

“This is how we are all going to die”

“What’s the point of anything”


Dr Nahid Dave Consultant Psychiatrist

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