Coping with “COVID Fatigue” and why doctors say now is the time to be extra cautious

Local News

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Franklin County is in the Orange Level of Ohio’s coronavirus alert system, and also dropped out of the top 10 for highest COVID-19 occurrence.

After six months of living with drastic lifestyle changes, a lot of people are feeling the effects, including fatigue, frustration. People are also easing up on some of the established protocols. Doctors say COVID fatigue is a thing, but also urge people to think about the big picture.

“My husband and I feel like people have stopped wearing masks. We feel like they’re being a lot less cautious,” said Columbus native Rachelle McDonough.

Doctors say they understand people want a sense of normalcy, but that can mean they are letting their guard down a little more.

“You want to talk about COVID fatigue? Well we’ve been living this and breathing this every day for six months,” said Dr. Iahn Gosenhauser, a physician at Ohio State University.

Dr. Iahn Gosenhauser says that now is the time to continue being vigilant and following all protocols laid out by the CDC.

“We’ve been doing a great job,” said Dr. Gosenhauser. “We’ve driven the numbers down but if we stop now, we’re in the third quarter of a pretty tight game. It can easily turn around and we can be in big trouble again.”

Stef Day says she lost a loved one to COVID-19 and says despite the frustration right now, being careful is a must.

“We need to make these sacrifices now so we don’t lose more people, more innocent people,” said Day. 

Day was diagnosed with the coronavirus herself and said she unknowingly exposed others when she was originally diagnosed with bronchitis.

Luckily, no one she exposed got sick but she says her experience is just a reminder that quarantine is crucial, especially right now.

“No one asks an elite athlete at the end of the right game, ‘Do you still have what it takes to keep on playing until the clock runs out?’ It’s just what we have to do. There’s no choice,” said Dr. Gosenahauser. 

But even with the exhaustion and frustration, most people are still listening to medical experts hoping things will be a little closer to normal in the near future.

Dr. Gosenhauser says he knows it’s been difficult but keeping connections alive, even if they are virtual or safely in person, are key to getting through the pandemic.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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