All on This Ride Together
I don't know how many roller coaster enthusiasts are out there these days, but over the years my summers always included time well spent with my daughter and friends visiting different amusement parks in search of the most thrilling rides. These memorable trips continued well into her early adulthood as I fought the all-too-familiar nausea so that I might squeeze in a few more thrills and experience that adrenaline rush from the speed and unknown ups and downs of the rides. As we mature, some of our enthusiasm for the rush of twists and turns is replaced with a need or desire for a sense of stability. While I remain an advocate of the importance of remaining young at heart and mind, along with age hopefully comes a certain amount of wisdom to prepare us to better handle the ups and downs of life.
As many would agree, I feel that since March we have all been on a roller coaster for which none of us were prepared or bought a ticket. Months after most of our country shut down and the initial shock has eased, many people are experiencing lingering affects and are fighting hard to return to some stability and positivity. According to a recent Newsday article, "The Lingering Malaise of COVID-19," in June 2020, 36.5% of adults surveyed reported symptoms of anxiety and depression-quite a jump from 11% reporting those symptoms between January 2019 and June 2019. I feel confident that this time will come to an end and we will return to a degree of normalcy and positivity, but until then there remains some solace in acknowledging that we are not alone in our struggles.
I remain heartbroken for what so many of us have been through and continue to experience in these tumultuous times, and yet I am also tremendously inspired by the selfless acts of kindness, strength, and thoughtfulness that I have seen within humanity. Words cannot adequately express the admiration and gratitude for those on the front line but also in the smallest acts of kindness of daily living. I once again wish to commend our profession, especially those many dental offices and laboratories that have used technology to offer aid with necessary PPE and other much-needed innovations during this time. Roller coasters are fun and I wish to eventually return to those rides with my daughter, but right now COVID-19 has taken a serious toll that must not be ignored. We must continue to support one another.
Peter Pizzi, MDT, CDT
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