Stress Awareness Month

April 22, 2021

Every year since 1992,  we have recognized April as Stress Awareness Month. After a full year of living through the global pandemic, acknowledging, educating, and learning to cope with stress is more of a necessity now than ever.

Stress and COVID-19

According to the American Psychological Association’s  Stress In America Study,  nearly 8 in 10 adults have said that the Coronavirus Pandemic is a significant source of stress in their life. Additionally, 2 in 3 adults say that they have experienced increased stress over the course of the pandemic. In the study, 49%  of adults reported that their behavior has negatively been affected. 

Stress manifests in many different ways, affecting our physical, mental, and emotional states. Long-term stress can lead to different physical and mental disorders, as well as serious health issues like stroke and heart disease.

Resources for Coping With Stress

Knowing how to cope with stressful situations and having a good self-care plan can decrease the symptoms of stress. 

The CDC recommends the following tasks to cope with stress:

  1. Take care of yourself. Eat healthy, exercise, get plenty of sleep, and give yourself a break if you feel stressed out.
  2. Talk to others. Share your problems and how you are feeling and coping with a parent, friend, counselor, doctor, or pastor.
  3. Avoid drugs and alcohol. These may seem to help, but they can create additional problems and increase the stress you are already feeling.
  4. Take a break. If news events are causing your stress, take a break from listening or watching the news.
  5. Recognize when you need more help. If problems continue or you are thinking about suicide, talk to a psychologist, social worker, or professional counselor.

You can also view the CDC’s  “Taking Care of Your Emotional Health” page for more resources. The American Hospital Association has COVID-19: Stress and Coping Resources for the general public, as well as healthcare professionals. Employers can utilize the Amerihealth Stress Awareness Employer Toolkit to provide employees with valuable information on stress management.

MABH Author

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