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Mental health professionals advise on a combined approach to return to work post-pandemic – CBS New York


SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) – It has been more than a year of hiding, hiding in place and working from home. We avoided public transport, hugs and handshakes. We were moving away from design and now millions of workers are being called back.

“You know, it’s weird to see a city like this. I really look forward to seeing everyone here again, ”said Dr. Jonathan Horowitz, clinical psychologist and founder of the San Francisco Center for Stress and Anxiety, when he saw his Market Street office. for the first time since the pandemic started.

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“It has been a stressful and anxious year,” Horowitz said.

He’s seen a huge boost in business thanks to COVID-19 and now he sees stressors for going back to the so-called ‘normal’ emerge during the sessions.

“There’s an arc of this pandemic, where it was all at first” how do we get it offline? How do we move? How do we deal with that? ‘And now’ how do we go the other way? ‘ “Horowitz said.

“I have seen a marked increase in the number of people returning to the drug, increasing the number of pills – a lot of insomnia, many panic attacks,” said Jennifer Hymes, a licensed clinical social worker.

This pandemic really exacerbates existing conditions and situations, Hymes said. Lonely people become more, troublesome relationships are challenged, and parents bond between work and childcare. Everyone had to learn how to draw lines. She recommends getting back to a hybrid model, take it easy.

“I’ll be back twice a week. I’ll see how I like it and I’ve got clients who have already done it. Some love it and for some it really feels weird, ”she said.

According to a PwC survey, 75% of employers are expected to ask their team to return to the office with some slots in July. Most (68%) executives want people to be in the office at least three days a week while more than half of the workers (55%) want to be away at least three days a week.

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Sean Lama, a Ubisoft employee, said: “I do expect to be back in some capacity very soon,” said Sean Lama, an employee at Ubisoft.

Lama says he looks forward to returning to work with one exception. “My main concern is public transport. I think from Caltrain, to be honest, even before a pandemic, I will really catch a cold all the time. “

For others, the trigger could be the lift, seeing crowded restaurants at lunchtime, or maybe an empty chair at a nearby desk.

“People are having a wide range of experiences,” Horowitz says, and they will deal with the emotions of those experiences differently and sometimes unpredictably.

Doctors are also urging patients to keep some of the positive side effects of the pandemic as strict boundaries.

“When I logged out of work, I was done. It made a huge difference and had to fall into a non-segregation extreme in order to realize the importance of separation, ”said Lama.

So if you are going back to work, be compassionate to your co-workers. This trauma affects everyone differently. Many people simply survive and it can take time to remember how to return to a state of life.

“I think this will stick with us forever, I don’t think this goes away anytime soon, psychologically it leaves us,” Hymes said.

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This pandemic has especially affected mental health. A survey by the Kaiser Family Organization found that 41% of adults reporting are currently experiencing anxiety and / or depression. Before the pandemic, that number was 11 percent.

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