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Experiencing an onset of unwanted coronavirus stress and anxiety? Here are tips to help you cope

Expert says find ways to appreciate your new free time

8. You have no "me" time -- Summer can do a major number on any "me" time you may try to pencil in as schedules are shot and commitments pile up. Use some vacation days just for yourself, or share child care or chauffering responsibilities with other parents to get your daily workout in. It's preventive mental health care.
8. You have no "me" time -- Summer can do a major number on any "me" time you may try to pencil in as schedules are shot and commitments pile up. Use some vacation days just for yourself, or share child care or chauffering responsibilities with other parents to get your daily workout in. It's preventive mental health care. (iStock/Brainsil)

SAN ANTONIO – What am I going to do if I lose my job? How long is this going to last? Will I get sick?

These are just some of the questions many of us have been asking ourselves in recent weeks.

The new coronavirus pandemic has brought about an uneasy shift in our normal lives.

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Not having control of the situation can be causing unwanted stress and anxiety.

"Different people are experiencing different things based upon their own psychology and their backgrounds and what they are used to," psychiatrist Dr. Harry Croft said.

While many of us may be concerned, Croft said try not to fixate on what you can’t control.

“The problem with the “what ifs” is that it causes anxiety and stress, so it rarely leads to doing something that’s productive about it,” Croft said.

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Dr. Croft offered some simple tips to help ease stress:

  • Try to create a routine: It gives you something that you know you have to do like getting up and taking care of your personal needs.
  • Control the things that you can control: If you can’t control something is leads to further frustration so do the things you know you can do.
  • Take care of yourself: Get enough sleep, eat well and get a little exercise.
  • Socialize: We are grown to think that this can only be done person-to-person. Take advantage of current technology and video chat with family and friends.
  • Mindfulness: Try meditation to help you relax and keep your mind in the here and now.
  • Talk to a professional: If nothing seems to be working it may be time to call for help or find a support group online.

Overall, Croft says try to focus on the bright side of this situation by making the most of the extra family time we are all getting.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.

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