Kolkata, Nov 18 : The central government’s demonetisation drive has taken a toll on the mental health of many cash-strapped people, with the rural population hit the most, said a senior psychiatrist here.
“Over the past couple of days, I have received quite a few cases from people adversely affected by the demonetization,” said Sanjay Garg, senior consultant psychiatrist at Fortis, Anandapur.
“Many of these calls came from rural Bengal, where people are largely dependent on liquid cash, unlike urban areas where online payments and cards are common”
“The rural folk do not have the plastic money option,” he added. Garg said people were skipping consultation dates due to the cash crunch. People are missing consultation dates in hospitals because they cannot afford the travelling expenses and doctor’s fees,” he said.
“Telephone consultations are a possibility but then again patient monitoring isn’t quite viable over the phone,” Garg said.
To fight the stress and anxiety during the liquid cash crunch, Garg provided a few tips to combat the demonetization fallout:
WALK : “The biggest help would be lifestyle modification,” he said. For example, physical activity like brisk walking and deep breathing could help in calming one’s nerves and relaxing the mind, Garg said.
LISTEN TO GOOD MUSIC: “Relaxation therapy and distraction technique like listening to music, dancing or pursuing one’s hobbies and engaging in some recreational activity could help, too,” he added.
STAY CLOSE TO ALMIGHTY: For those religiously inclined, they could engage themselves in meditation and regular spirituality as it would divert their mind and also provide solace from the problem. Take your own good quite time.
AVOID SMOKING : Garg also advised not to trust random information and rumours. “Don’t trust information from random resources, check for authenticity before reacting and lastly cut down on maladapted behaviour like smoking and drinking,” he said.
IMPROVE YOUR CONNECTIVITY: “Improving your social network, including your family , friends are extremely important during these times,” Garg advised.
Health is wealth!