Amy, 22, a Jigsaw volunteer from Limerick shares her experience of the pandemic.
My experience of the Covid-19 pandemic has been somewhat different to that of my peers, as I am living in a high-risk household. A member of my family is currently undergoing chemotherapy which compromises their health immensely. Because of this, myself and the other members of my family are not only responsible for our own health, but for their health too.
The feeling of responsibility for someone else’s health is a difficult feeling to put into words. I did not feel much pressure and frustration during the first lockdown as everyone was in the same boat. I oddly felt safer and more relaxed knowing that everyone was undertaking the necessary precautions.
Our sleeping rhythms and needs change as we get older. Although we may feel we can manage with a certain amount of sleep, there are recommended times for overall health.
Teenagers need between eight to ten hours sleep a night, though they are more likely to get around seven. Adults require a bit less; between eight and nine hours. These guidelines may seem ambitious, or even unrealistic. But sleep is essential for your health and for cognitive functions like learning.
Research has proven when school start times are put forward to allow students to get more sleep, it leads to an increase in academic performance. In a 2018 study, a Seattle High School delayed its start time by an hour and saw a 4.5% increase in the median grades of the students. It also saw an improvement in attendance.
It is possible to sleep too much (over ten hours regularly). Find out the right amount of sleep for you within these guidelines to feel rested when you wake.
How many times have you heard the words ‘just relax’. Sometimes it’s easier said than done.
It can also be quite annoying to have someone telling you to relax, when there seems to be a lot on and out of your control.
But often, life can be so busy we forget to take a break and step back. It’s not unusual to have several things on our mind all at once.
Things like exams, family, friends, finances, and the future can feel overwhelming. Feeling stressed or tense can be a signal to take a break and have some downtime. Relaxation is important for our mental health.
Most of us expect that after being a student at school or college we will get a job and embark on a career.
Lots of young people work to help finance their studies. However, particularly in the current climate, many are finding it difficult to find a job or a career. When facing the uncertainty around employment it is vital to pay attention to our mental health.