With the surge in the number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the country, it comes as no surprise that it is creating a new age of anxiety. People everywhere roaming around in masks, stores running out of disinfectants and other protective equipment have urged Americans to be prepared for the crisis. Mental health experts opined that it is not only normal to be anxious but even helpful at this time.

“Anxiety, when it’s at the right level, encourages us to take positive action,” TODAY quoted Dr. Kelli Harding, an assistant professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York. “It’s OK to have that moment of panic because, in a way, if you can move beyond that, you can start making adequate precautions.”

Here’s how you can deal with COVID-19 anxiety:

1. Be Prepared

Anxiety can be dealt with better if you take control of it. Taking basic steps to prepare for a possible outbreak can give you a sense of relief. You could ask your employer to let you work from home. You could also be prepared for other disruptions including school closings and plan accordingly.

2. Be Aware and Stay Updated

Be in the know, but don’t go overboard and obsess over the news. While it is important to stay updated about what’s happening in your area, it could become problematic when you gather too much information. It could rather cause a lot of fear and anxiety. Thus, it is enough just to take adequate steps to stay protected and be informed. After all, there isn’t any way to reduce your risk to zero, NPR mentioned.

3. Get Adequate Sleep

Prior research had proved that people who rested well were better at fending off viruses. You could try practicing techniques including cognitive behavioral therapy, if in case you are suffering from insomnia.

4. Eat Healthily and Exercise Regularly

Although this is applicable for overall wellness, it’s worth trying especially during times of uncertainty like this. Regular physical activity can not only help promote feelings of well-being and immunity but also help combat anxiety. And consume a healthy diet similar to the Mediterranean diet which is rich in fruits and vegetables, lean protein and whole grains which can help reduce anxiety as well as depression.

5. Communicate with Your Loved Ones

Write a text message chain or an email chain with family on it, TODAY mentioned. Not only can this make you fight anxiety better but show your loved ones that you care and that they aren't alone in this.

generalized anxiety disorder treatment supplement generalized anxiety disorder treatment supplement Photo: Free-Photos - Pixabay