COVID-19 School of Medicine

Podcast: Preserving mental, physical health while isolating at home

Public health sciences expert Graham Colditz, MD, DrPH, says those confining themselves to their homes can take steps to stay mentally and physically healthy, the most important of which involves being kind to oneself. Colditz and psychiatrist Jessica Gold, MD – both of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis – offer advice about how to lower stress levels and stay healthy during the pandemic.

The St. Louis region and most of the United States are under stay-at-home orders, meaning that aside from reporting to “essential” jobs that require attendance, and trips to the grocery store, drug store or other necessary errands, most people are spending more time at home than ever before.

This week’s podcast features experts in maintaining one’s physical and mental health while isolated. Washington University public health sciences expert Graham Colditz, MD, DrPH, studies how small changes in behavior can have a big impact on health. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect all of our lives, he has been writing about the need to stay home and maintain social distancing, as well as the potential pitfalls of ignoring those measures.

This week, we also hear from Jessica Gold, MD, an assistant professor of psychiatry, who works with college students and young adults. She says stress caused by the pandemic, combined with emotional and social implications of stay-at-home orders, contribute to anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder for many. Gold offers strategies that might help some people avoid those complications.

Read more and listen.