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On the surface, psychiatry and viruses are unrelated. Yet COVID-19 has taught us – literally and figuratively – that the existence of viruses has a profound impact on our mental health. 

Viruses are so small that there was debate for decades/centuries over if they even existed.  Can’t see it so it must not be there, right? Thanks to the many advances in science, technology, and medicine, we’ve all come to accept their power and influence. Over the last 3 years, they’ve demanded our time, attention, energy, money, and, (sadly) our lives.

Misinformation and disinformation about viruses doesn’t make them any less deadly. The virus doesn’t care if you wear a mask, or get a vaccine, or trust news anchors to deliver the unbiased truth when reporting on the pandemic. The virus can only perform its natural action of infecting, and potentially killing. 

A virus is without feelings or reason; like the android Ash notes of the titular horrifying monster in Ridley Scott’s sci-fi classic Alien (1979), “Its structural perfection is… its purity… [which is] unclouded by conscience, remorse, or delusions of morality.” Perhaps if we respect viruses for their lack of bias and treat them like the characters in this film treated the alien, we would remember how truly horrifying they are (and be more committed to eradicating them instead of picking sides in a silly political battle). 

 Psychiatry is all about feelings and logic. Yet, we don’t respect it because it lacks the scans and tests to identify mental ailments. Shabby mental health leads to lifelong illness and poorer quality of life. Like a virus, inadequate mental health seeps into all aspects of our lives, disrupting families, ecosystems, and social norms. We should be taking our mental health as seriously as we should be taking COVID-19. And neither is going anywhere anytime soon.

Misinformation and disinformation are rampant about both psychiatry and viruses. Denial is a powerful defense mechanism. Unfortunately, denial doesn’t make the virus less of a threat to you and your family. This is equally true of poor mental health: failing to acknowledge your mental health blindspots don’t make them go away; instead, they lead to increased human misery.

As a company, we fight for reintegrating mental health into every aspect of our modern lifestyle. Whether we can “see it” or not, the mental health pandemic has been influencing humanity for centuries. We’ve proven that when we focus our energies on a foe, society can make great strides in a short time. We at Simply Psych are committed to building and supporting a robust mental health workforce to meet the needs of every person in society. “Therapy for all” has a nice ring to it.

Find us wherever you are.