You may not remember the Covid-19 pandemic. That is why.
The pandemic is an unprecedented event in our lives, and common sense would dictate that we naturally remember how we felt while living it. However, research and history could prove otherwise.
Identical days and memory operation
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Covid-19 has made us forget, and there are a multitude of reasons why this has happened. But to understand how, it can be helpful to look at how we remember things.
A common word to describe memory in articles dealing with memory is “scrapbook”. This makes sense, because in retrospect, it’s not a continuous, clear flow that we remember, but rather particular moments of significance, uniqueness, or just something that stuck together.
In an episode of NPR’s Short Wave titled “What We Will Remember – And Won’t Remember about the Pandemic,” the presenters discuss how what a person remembers will vary based on the individual and their experiences. From new events, our moods, and our beliefs about whether a society is collectivist or individualistic, a wide range of factors affect memory.
While something like massive change or personal tragedy will not be easily forgotten by most, factors like one’s profession, such as medical professionals who have had a drastically different experience during the pandemic, or extreme events such as the loss of a loved one or the loss of a job, and “absences” such as postponed marriages or inability to have a graduation ceremony, are memories that will last longer.
Many of us have been fortunate enough not to have had the aforementioned experiences. Yet while the pandemic was an event that in many ways, both metaphorically and literally, brought us to a halt on earth, we often found ourselves increasingly oblivious.
Some of the reasons may be obvious. The stress induced by trying to transition so quickly to a new way of life could have made many unable to stop to actually observe and think about how their life has changed dramatically. Many will remember the horrific incidents accompanying or directly caused by the pandemic, whether it was a job loss or the loss of a loved one.
However, for many, the days have just become repetitive and blend into each other with almost nothing new happening to differentiate them. This lack of new events may seem insignificant, but the impact has been severe.
In fact, the monotony of life during quarantine had caused even those with what is called highly superior autobiographical memory, a skill that was so easy on them before the lockdown.
Isolation can have a negative impact on our memories. An article on BBC Future explains how even those involved in a regular job or school might suffer from missing informal conversations with people we work with or go to school. Even though many of us dread gossip, it has benefits we might not be aware of. Research has shown that small talk increases positive social emotions in everyday life in the workplace and even leads to greater well-being. There is also some evidence to support the idea that relationships with people with whom we might have what are called “weak ties” can help. During the pandemic, the chatter had all but disappeared.
Online, the spontaneous nature of these interviews cannot be faked, at least not easily. One of the very things that made conversations about water coolers enjoyable in the first place was that the conversation wasn’t meant to take place. Now, while someone who receives a message may be surprised and get a sense of the long-lost novelty offered by the conversation, the person sending the message may not get the same benefit.
Mental health challenges
The loss of community, mourning the deaths of loved ones, increasing uncertainty, the tiring nature of Zoom meetings, increased boredom and lost opportunities for interactions with others and general worry caused by Covid-19 were sufficient reasons to worsen the mental health conditions. However, the severity of the severity of the impact on us can be understood by the range of behavioral changes that have occurred with the pandemic.
The Mayo Clinic, in a social media post, says people can have fluctuating appetites and difficulty concentrating on simple, routine tasks, which ultimately hampers our ability to lead life the way we used to. previously.
Memories are also affected by mental illnesses, as research conducted long before the pandemic has amply demonstrated. The most concerning and rather heart-breaking information, however, could be that people who have had Covid-19 may have more mental health issues after recovery, causing other memory-related issues.
Brain damage caused by Covid-19
From reduced oxygen caused by weakened lungs to symptoms similar to brain injury after being discharged from the hospital after surviving the coronavirus, our brains may not function the same once the virus does. entered our system. While many recover, some may develop long-term disability or even have an increased risk of stroke from the infection causing blood clots.
Brain tissue from deceased patients revealed damage and inflammation in the area. Leaky blood vessels can have far-reaching consequences, which worries many researchers, resulting in a greater likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s disease in the years to come.
While this article may seem bleak, there is hope, and as many have discovered, recovery is possible. The solutions are the ones we have often heard and criticized – mindfulness and exercise, happiness being music.
1. Academy of Management Journal (October 27, 2021). Office gossip as a social ritual: the uplifting yet distracting effects of small, everyday conversations at work.
2. Bulletin of personality and social psychology (April 25, 2014). Social interactions and well-being: the surprising power of weak ties.
3. NPR (January 5, 2021). How COVID-19 attacks the brain and can cause lasting damage.