With states and territories in Australia reaching vaccination targets and restrictions easing, many Australians are looking forward to increasing freedoms and a return to a more normal way of life. For some, however, the ending of lockdowns is causing feelings of stress and anxiety with uncertainty about how we will live with COVID-19 and the effects the virus will have.
The end of lockdowns does not mean the end of COVID-19 and it is very normal to have fear or anxiety about what catching the virus could mean for you or a loved one.
Things to remember:
- The vaccines provide very good protection in the prevention of hospitalisations and severe illness. The best thing you can do to protect yourself and others is to get vaccinated. Click here to book your COVID-19 vaccination.
- Do the things you are comfortable with. For example, avoid crowded areas, wear masks and don't attend venues or activites that don't feel right for you at this time.
- Take things one day at a time. You don't have to rush back into everything, slowly build your confidence bit by bit. Start small with short interactions with just a few people and gradually work your way up to longer, more crowded situations.
- Keep up your hand hygiene. Wash your hands with soap and water often and well.
- Get tested if you have the mildest of symptoms, even if you have been vaccinated.
- Physically distance when you can.
- Gather outdoors or in well-ventillated indoor spaces.
- Know that your concerns are valid. COVID-19 is a serious illness that can have devastating effects on vulnerable people, it is completely normal to feel worried.
- COVID-19 has taught us all to be more adaptable, flexible and resilient. Restrictions may continue to come and go but we are all now experienced in dealing with them and are better prepared for possible future restrictions.
How to access mental health support
If you need to talk, contact any of these organisations:
Lifeline - Call 13 11 14 or visit lifeline.org.au
Beyond Blue - Call 1300 22 4636 or visit beyondblue.org.au
Children and young adults (up to age 25) - Call 1800 55 1800 or visit Kids Helpline
For more COVID-19 mental health tips please click here.
To become a care or support worker, please visit www.careseekers.com.au/carer
To find disability support services, please visit www.careseekers.com.au/services/disability-support-workers
To find aged care services, please visit www.careseekers.com.au/services/aged-care-workers