Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, 4 in 10 adults in the U.S. alone have reported symptoms of anxiety disorders. That number has significantly increased from 1 in 10 adults reportedly being affected by these symptoms in 2019. As a result, many adults have been reporting negative impacts on their overall well-being such as difficulty sleeping, eating, and maintaining a healthy mindset.
While this seems to be a direct response to isolation and loneliness caused by the pandemic, it is important to learn to cope with these symptoms and understand the changes caused by COVID-19 to the people around you.
How has the pandemic impacted mental health?
As noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), stress and anxiety can cause changes in appetite, energy, desires, and interests, difficulty concentrating and making decisions, and worsening of mental health conditions, and more. The Kaiser Family Foundation expands that many of these negative effects and risk factors are influenced by household status. Due to the pandemic, many individuals have lost jobs or have received lower income. As a result, it is no surprise that the percentage of adults noting symptoms of stress and anxiety will continue to increase with another wave on its way.
Anxiety in children and young adults have also been impacted by COVID-19. Many children have had to cope with traumas from the loss of financial stability or illness in the family due to the pandemic. Recognizing their changes in mood and loss of interest in things they once enjoyed is going to be extremely important in helping your children.
So how can you cope with anxiety?
One easy but major change to manage anxiety is to try to limit watching and reading news or social media outlets to a few times a day. While it is good to stay updated with current events, it can also take a toll on your mental well-being. This is especially true with the uneven amount of negative news being released. Even the CDC recommends taking breaks from media outlets to alleviate stress and avoid worsening pre-existing mental illness.
It is also important to take care of your mind and body. Taking care of yourself could be exercising, meditating, eating healthy, or stepping away from your daily routine. As important as it is to follow appropriate health measures to stay safe during the pandemic, it is equally important that you attempt to have healthy interactions with your loved ones.
Additionally, Zoom calls have been an excellent solution for people who miss hanging out with their friends. Providing simulated social situations is beneficial for people who have experienced acute loneliness and isolation.
Lastly, mindfulness and meditation have been proven to be effective in coping with stress and anxiety. Practicing various meditations throughout your day can help you create a healthier mindset. Deep breathing exercises either by yourself or guided via an app can also vastly improve your health.
If you are looking for a tool designed specifically to remind you to stay grounded and prevent panic attacks, you can check out Moksha Necklace today. This deep breathing necklace helps to serve as a reminder to slow down and has the perfect resistance so you can focus more on the exercises and less on the exhalation time.