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How to look after your mental health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic outbreak

1 Apr 2020
News 4 min read

VicHealth's Coronavirus Victorian Wellbeing Impact study highlights the impact big events like bushfires and coronavirus have had on Victorians’ physical and mental health.

Author: VicHealth works with health promotion experts to create a Victoria where everyone can enjoy better health and wellbeing. 

Any coronavirus information mentioned is accurate at the time this article was first published (20 October 2020). For the most up-to-date information about coronavirus restrictions, please visit the source:


VicHealth’s Coronavirus Victorian Wellbeing Impact Study revealed that during the first coronavirus lockdown, Victorians were feeling less socially connected, and many reported mental wellbeing issues and lower levels of life satisfaction.

With more of us experiencing the mental health impact of the pandemic what can we do about it?

Here are some tips from the mental health experts at Beyond Blue to help you cope with any anxiety, distress or concern related to coronavirus (COVID-19).


The team at Beyond Blue, one of Australia’s leading mental health organisations, has put together some tips to help you manage your mental health during current restrictions.


Tips for looking after your mental health from Beyond Blue:

  • Media coverage: find a healthy balance and limit news and social media if you and your family find it too distressing.

person locking their mobile phone

Striking a balance in your media consumption during coronavirus can minimise the possibility of you feeling overwhelmed by what is happening.

  • Sources of information: access credible information from government and health authorities (i.e. Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)Australian Government and World Health Organisation (WHO)).
  • Maintain perspective: remember that experts around the world are working hard to help. Also, while coronavirus can affect anyone, those with the disease haven’t done anything wrong so don’t make assumptions
  • Stay calm and be practical: follow advice from credible sources (see above), and continue to do the right things, as this makes it easier for authorities to manage current case numbers.
  • Stay connected and/or seek support: keep in touch with your family, friends, colleagues or professional support services by phone, video call, social media or email.

stay connected

Use technology to stay connected to your friends and family if you’re unable to see them in person.

  • Stick to a routine: aim to get plenty of sleep, maintain physical activity, eat healthy foods and allocate specific work hours and breaks. If you’re feeling frustrated about your current experience it can help to think about what positive habits you might be able to develop, such as spending more time with the family members within your household, getting to know your neighbourhood and cooking more.

small stretches

Make the time to move your body throughout the day, particularly if working remotely. Stretching at home is an easy way to stay moving.

eating healthy - Beci orpin

Eating a healthy diet which includes lots of vegetables and fruit will help you feel good physically and maintain your energy levels throughout the day.


While you may be experiencing heightened levels of anxiety and stress, following these tips can help reduce these feelings, and support your mental health so you’re better able to stay mentally healthy.


There’s help out there if you need it 

While it’s normal to feel frustrated, bored or angry with the current situation from time to time there are signs of serious mental health conditions to look out for in yourself and others.

Feeling sad all the time, losing interest in the things you love doing, feeling constantly tired or feeling excessively worried or scared are symptoms you shouldn’t ignore.

It’s ok to not be ok – there is help out there and talking to someone about what you’re going through can make a big difference.

KEY CONTACTS: Phone Lifeline: 13 11 14, Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636 or Headspace: 1800 650 890


So, in summary, if you’re feeling anxious or stressed:



Have questions about coronavirus?

For all Coronavirus questions visit  or call the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) hotline on 1800 675 398.


Illustrations by Beci Orpin

Artwork by Dexx (Gunditjmara/Boon Wurrung) ‘Mobs Coming Together’ 2022

VicHealth acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land. We pay our respects to all Elders past, present and future.

This website may contain images, names and voices of deceased people.

VicHealth acknowledges the support of the Victorian Government.


Artwork Credit: Dexx (Gunditjmara/Boon Wurrung) ‘Mobs Coming Together’ 2022, acrylic on canvas. Learn more