Coronavirus: Study shows stay-at-home orders are possibly contributing to 'quarantine fatigue,' driving people outdoors

Are Americans starting to feel tired of staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic? According to new research, "quarantine fatigue" might be setting in.
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- Are Americans starting to feel tired of staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic? According to new research, "quarantine fatigue" might be setting in.

Researchers tracking smartphone data say for the first time since states began stay-at-home orders in mid-March in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, Americans are staying home less, according to the Washington Post.

The shift comes as Americans make their way into the second month of quarantine with no end in sight for some areas, and as people feel the pinch by struggling neighbors.

Marcos Voyatzis' wife works at Dory Fishing Fleet in Newport Beach and went to visit her Sunday.

"I came down to visit my wife and see how the sales were going," said the Fountain Valley resident.

He said his mother isn't so lucky.

"My mom, she helps us out. She actually comes down and sells fish for my brother and for me, also," he said. "She's been stuck home now for a month and a half. It's pretty hard for her actually."

That isolation is exactly what experts say is driving what they are calling "quarantine fatigue" and a drop in people staying at home.

The findings come as counties like Los Angeles still keep beaches and parks closed.

Public health experts, according to the article, wonder how long people are willing to tolerate cabin fever for the greater good as their fatigue grows and we transition into warmer weather.

It's not just seniors feeling the rooms closing in. Voyatzis says there are others in his family with cabin fever.

But experts warn not staying at home increases the potential of spreading the virus until widespread testing and contact tracing becomes available.

Voyatzis says despite his wife working at Newport Beach Pier, his family is adhering to strict physical distancing.

"Once in a while, she drives by my house and says hi outside the car and then drives away," he said.

And she'll continue to drive by until it's safe for her to be reunited with her family in person.
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