Stress becomes traumatic when people face uncontrollable and unpredictable events that are continually changing and require constant attention. In the case of the current COVID-19 pandemic, actions taken by authorities such as stay-at-home orders and social distancing create new challenges and sources of stress. Responses to these actions range from anger and frustration to hopelessness and loneliness – and, for some, worsen depression and anxiety. This is where technology can help by tracking changes in people’s symptoms, sleep patterns and physical activity levels. The aim is to examine the impact of a mass event like the current pandemic on changes in mental health. This will allow us to eventually predict which people need help at a much earlier stage and link them to the appropriate services.
Photo by Jezael Melgoza at Unsplash.