The outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus may be stressful for people. Coping with stress can be difficult for anyone, but especially so for a solitary driver who may be over-the-road for several weeks at a time.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says stress during an infectious disease outbreak like the current one can include:
- Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones
- Changes in sleep or eating patterns
- Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
- Worsening of chronic health problems
- Worsening of mental health conditions
- Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs
The CDC says everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and offers these tips on how to cope with that stress:
- Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
- Take care of your body
- Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate
- Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals
- Exercise regularly, even it’s taking a walk when you stop for a break
- Get plenty of sleep
- Avoid alcohol and drugs
- Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy
- Connect with others; friends, family, colleagues you trust. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling
Granted, doing these things are not always easy if you’re on the road and living out of your truck. It’s important you do the best you can.