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Lack of human connections is harmful

Being a health care provider during a national pandemic has been challenging to say the least.

During these times, technology has been helpful. However, it can also be frustrating. We have made our lives easier and faster, but how humane is technology?

My career as a mental health provider started back in the days of sitting with patients for a full hour with my pen and pad ready and my attention fully on my patient. It was about connections. It was about human interactions and socialization.

Today, we are taught to "social distance" ourselves, which includes visits to our health care providers. We no longer hold out our hands for that firm handshake. We no longer give hugs to our fellow humans in need.

In my practice, we are making virtual connections through technology. We are seeing sicker patients and I wonder if this has anything to do with humans disconnecting. Human beings are social animals and we are working against our innate instincts for human closeness and connection.

Anxiety, depression, and substance use has escalated with minimal support for patients financially through insurance companies. As a nation we are not helping each other heal and failing our own. Please let us come together and demand more.

Michele Litwin

East Lyme

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