The pandemic has been hard on everyone, confining them to the depths of their homes.

Ash Lopez, Journalist

While most have been able to overcome the difficulties of remote isolation, a spare few have been unable to cope.This has led to many unhealthy ways of coping that people have been trying.

Most people stuck in isolation use the time to pick up new skills, and try new things. Most of those things tend to be good, such as cooking, fitness, etc.

However, there have been a few who have chosen less than ideal hobbies.

According to kalb.com, Jefferson Parish Coroner Dr. Gerry Cvitanovich stated in an interview. ““Just to give you some numbers, we had 233 total overdoses in 2020 compared to 154 in 2019,” said Cvitanovich, M.D. “We have seen an increase in methamphetamine as well but the biggest increase is in fentanyl, literally if you are just going from year to year, in 2019 we had 75 fentanyl or fentanyl-related deaths, this past year it was up to 160, so more than double.”

This is supported by LSU Health’s Chief of Community and Population Medicine, Benjamin Springgate, M.D., who says, specifically “When people are isolated, they fall back into negative thought patterns, they start using potentially more and this is a real crisis for people who have a treatable illness,” said Springgate. “Many of the clinics and support structures that would be available to help people with their challenges of addiction have been closed or had limited hours.”

This shows that general mental health and the mental wellbeing of the people stuck in isolation in the pandemic is being drained, as humans are generally social creatures.

There are lots of solutions that experts offer, but so far, most cannot be done because of the rules of social distancing.

So far, the things that do work are things like calling your friends remotely, taking up new hobbies – that hopefully don’t result in drug overdoses – and trying new things. You can see that people are slowly relapsing into addictions that can hurt them, and hopefully trying things that don’t harm you can help you during the pandemic.