U.S. anxiety and depression rates expected to spike due to COVID-19


WEST MONROE, LA. (03/23/2020)– Nearly 7 million people in the U.S. are affected by generalized anxiety disorder and about 6 million with panic disorder. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says anxiety and depression may worsen for people who are most susceptible to COVID-19. This includes older individuals and those with chronic diseases.

“Isolation and getting out of routine and things like that is not going to be a good for people that suffer from anxiety or depression,” Cierra Fussell, Marriage and Family therapist, said.

Empty store shelves, fear that food supplies will run out, unemployment are all aspects that can trigger stress that can lead to negative emotions.

“Going to the gym or being able to go get a drink with a friend or being able to go get lunch,” Fussell said. “all of those things being removed are definitely going to cause an increase in the depression or anxiety symptoms that we are going to be seeing.”

If you are experiencing depression or anxiety, Fussell says you should try to stick to your routine as much as possible.

“If you are in treatment, for your anxiety and depression, please continue to go to your sessions either via telehealth or if they are continuing with face to face sessions,” Fussell said.

Fussell says staying in contact through social media or even making one phone call to loved one can make a difference.

“Facetime dinners with each other to still feel like you are getting that communication and that connection with somebody,” Fussell said. “As simple as letting them know that you are there will make a world of difference.”

Finding Solace Counseling & Mental Health in West Monroe is offering telehealth sessions.These sessions provide coping skills to help with managing the fear, sadness, and anger that may be arising. Fussell says most insurance agencies have agreed to cover the cost of telehealth.

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