Pandemic -related anxiety is running rampant for many in the midst of COVID-19. Not only are anxiety-provoking situations becoming more and more common, many people’s lives have completely changed in the last few months.
While it can be overwhelming and an unsure experience for everyone, pandemic-related anxiety is more common than you may think. If this is an issue you are dealing with, there are many things that you can do to help.
Follow a Routine
Following a routine, especially during such uncertain times as a pandemic, will help you to feel some sense of normalcy. Making sure to get the work you need to get done finished earlier in the day, if possible, will help you to be able to wind down at night and avoid extra stress.
Keeping a schedule written down will help you have something to physically check off in order to avoid getting too stressed about the things that you need to get done. Having a routine will help you to stay in the same habits you had before and help to readjust to the post-pandemic world.
Get Better Sleep
Going to bed earlier and unplugging from the screens at least thirty minutes before bedtime will help you to unwind from the day and fall asleep faster. Playing nature sounds or soft music can help people fall asleep as well as weighted blankets. Guided meditation and apps that will help you to calm down before sleeping are also helpful.
Journaling, baths, and meditation are calming and quieter options that will allow you to think through things and destress before bed and may help you feel less anxious in the morning. Whatever you choose to do, make sure it is relaxing and not a source of stress for you.
CBD is a great form of anxiety relief for many people. Not only does it have many benefits for anxiety, but it can also help those with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and insomnia.
CBD should only be used where it is both legal and doctor supported if needed. While CBD can work for many people, there are still some that may have side effects from it such as fatigue or digestive issues. Use caution and speak to a healthcare provider before use and stop if any side effects happen.
Adopt an Emotional Support Animal
Animals are a great source of anxiety relief for many people, but they can be a problem if you have allergies. However, there are hypoallergenic animals that could be a good fit for you.
There are many different breeds of puppies with unique qualities and personalities. Getting a puppy, or a senior dog, may be a great fit for you and will help you to lower your anxiety. If you’re not a fan of dogs, or if you’re allergic, cats and other animals can also make good companions for those with anxiety.
Emotional Support Animals, or ESAs, are commonly used for those with mental health concerns and make good companions that can help you stay grounded and calm when anxiety attacks hit. You’ll want to research the process of getting an ESA in your area and work with a professional to get the paperwork done.
See a Therapist if your fighting Pandemic-related anxiety
Talking to a therapist about what you’re thinking, and feeling is one of the best ways for many people to treat their mental health concerns. Whether it is a one-time visit, or ongoing care, a therapist can help you work through what you’re feeling and help you develop healthy and effective coping strategies to use now and in the future.
Talking with a therapist can be very helpful to all people, whether you’re struggling with anxiety or not. If you’re concerned about seeing a therapist in person, there are some places that offer care through apps and phone calls.
Limit Media Exposure
Social media can make anyone feel overwhelmed, but if you’re already struggling with pandemic-related anxiety, you should consider limiting your time behind the screen as much as possible.
Setting app time limits is a good way to help you stay away from apps and not waste time and energy by scrolling through the Facebook arguments on your feed.
Limiting the amount of screen time you have that isn’t necessary for work or for school can help you to sleep better at night and reduce your overall anxiety level by a significant amount.
Getting outside more often and soaking in the sun and fresh air is one of the best ways to reduce anxiety. Going on walks around the block, going for a hike, swimming with family at the lake, walking to the mailbox, or even just sitting on the front porch for a few minutes are all ways to get outside for a few minutes.
Not only is it better for your overall mental health to be outside more often, but it can also help give your eyes a break from looking at a screen. Whatever activities you choose to do, making sure to spend time away from the distractions and taking a second to check in with yourself can help lower your anxiety.
Be Patient with Yourself
Dealing with anxiety under normal circumstances can be exhausting and difficult, but adding a global pandemic just makes it a lot worse. However, you have to be patient with yourself and with your mental health during this time, especially.
Knowing that you’re not alone might help you feel a bit better about struggling with pandemic-related anxiety. Being patient with yourself will help you to get through the day a little easier and to know that it is okay to be stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed during so many changes in the world.
Anxiety is a scary thing for anyone to deal with, and pandemic-related anxiety is no different. If you are currently struggling with anxiety, know that you are not alone and that there are things you can do and people who can help.
Whether that’s speaking with a therapist or adopting an emotional support animal, there are things that you can do to help ease your anxiety and make life a little easier.
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