COVID-19 and Anxiety

Individuals who have pre-existing anxiety disorders are especially prone to seeing a spike in their symptoms at this most unprecedented time in our nation. This is true for those who have been diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

There’s a palpable sense of heightened anxiety that permeates the atmosphere these days. We’re repeatedly exposed to alarming updates regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

There are multiple reasons why we may find ourselves struggling with increased anxiety. Individuals with pre-existing health challenges are especially prone to feeling increased anxiety about the possibility of contracting COVID-19.

Each new day brings distressing updates about new cases of COVID-19, as well as updated information about those who have died as a result of contracting this virus. When we happen to hear about a newly-diagnosed case in our immediate area, the abstract and theoretical instantly becomes up close and very personal.

I personally happen to fall into the high risk category category for contracting COVID-19, given that I am taking an immunosuppressant medication for the management of my relapsing-remitting MS. As a result, I am carefully heeding instruction about the critical need for social distancing and more frequent handwashing.

Thankfully, there are steps that we can take to manage our anxiety. It’s absolutely necessary to remind ourselves of those areas of our lives where we can still exert control. Doing so mitigates the overall severity of our anxiety symptoms.

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