Coronaphobia in times of Coronage: People approaching psychiatrists as fear of getting Covid-19 increases

Indore: These are tough times and it’s all about the mind. Nationwide lockdown due to Pandemic COVID-19 has not only affected people physically and economically but mentally in a major way. The impact of the disease is so high that psychiatrists are now increasing number of cases called ‘Coronaphobia’.

This terminology ‘coronaphobia’ has been derived by experts to define the feeling of emptiness, anxiety and fear in someone of getting COVID-19 or being infected by the same.

HoD of Psychiatry Department in Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Medical College Dr Ram Ghulam Razdan said, “The pandemic COVID-19 and the lockdown due to the same has had an adverse effect on people as cases of depression, anxiety and other issues are increasing. We are also seeing some patients who are medically and physically fit but have a fear psychosis that they might get afflicted by the infection.”

Sharing one of the cases, Dr Razdan said, “A 35-year-old man approached him with the complaint of having COVID-19. However, his reports were negative and he didn’t have any other disease as well. But the patient kept saying that he had COVID-19 and will die if not treated on time.”

The HoD counselled the patient but he was continuously saying that he was Covid-hit and kept on seeking that same thing and was asking for doctor’s guarantee that he is not having COVID-19.

“After counseling the patient, we was put on medication for the same and we told him to visit every week for sessions,” he said adding “This was not the first case as a woman of about 28-30 years too had approached him about a month ago with the same problem. She had fever for which she had taken medication and was healthy but she was anxious of having COVID-19.”

Dr Razdan said that such psychological problems are known as ‘Somatization Disorders’ in which patient didn’t have the disease but have feeling and anxiety of the same.

People feeling symptoms of COVID-19

Psychiatrist Dr Rahul Mathur said that the OPD in mental hospital has been double post lockdown and they are witnessing many patients suffering from depression, anxiety, and somatization disorder.

“We are seeing many people who feel like having symptoms of COVID-19. However, we analyze them on anatomical and psychological basis and counsel them for the same. Such cases are increasing but awareness is also increasing,” he added.

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