- How to deal with the anxiety of returning to the ‘new’ normality.
- A new challenge affects our community now that we are seeing how restaurants, shopping centers and more reopen.
- We spoke with therapist Jaydy Guzmán about how to make this new transition and leave behind fears and insecurities.
Little by little we are returning to normality and, for example, in Georgia restaurants have already reopened, shopping centers have already reopened. And all this is generating in our community a lot of anxiety to return to what this new normal is going to be.
Precisely to talk about this issue and to answer all the doubts that our community has, we have invited the therapist Jaydy Guzmán to join us.
MB: How are you?
JG: Hello, a pleasure to be with you today. Thank you so much for the invitation.
You have more than 20 years working with the Latino community in the United States. I want to see your point of view,what is happening now that we have to return to normal life?
I think that a lot of fear has been the constant of all these eight weeks since March 15, when everything began to close. I have been observing all the changes. For example, six, seven weeks ago, I was talking about what we were anticipating, what the populations at risk were going to be, people with chronic diseases, people who had anxiety problems already existing in older adults.
And we have been surprised that there are populations that have tested positive, also at high risk, such as children and adolescents. Last week the admissions to an emergency and psychological care centers for children and adolescents with existing illnesses rose dramatically.
So let’s say that the population has made a curve of fear and anxiety that we have been seeing, first, as an expectation. The virus will arrive, the virus will arrive And all the scares and all that bad information that was there at the beginning regarding the broadcast.
And later? Well, the enthusiasm was what I began to see and the novelty of being at home with the children and with the family. After everything normalized a little bit, all the numbers went up and soared and, just like that, we went up with what was anxiety and panic attacks, which was what has manifested itself the most.
Anxiety in itself before COVID, before the pandemic, was one of the mental illnesses with the highest incidence in the United States, right? And added to an incidence of what is happening and the uncertainty that all this generates.
That is why, when all these restrictions begin to loosen, people are going out so massively and very worryingly to the streets, because we have a certain tolerance towards confinement. People are really beginning to despair and now I think that it is a critical moment in which, definitely, we are with this possibility of being outside, that we do it with measure, that we do it carefully and that we do have to get involved again. normality and continuity of life.
Dealing With Anxiety To Get Back To Normal, Expert Advice
You tell us that anxiety and panic attacks are what we have seen the most in the community, but I know of people very close to me that, sometimes, you don’t even know you have anxiety. How do you know if you have a panic attack?
Very good question, because people who already know anxiety know very well when they start to have those peaks and that closeness to which anxiety begins to turn from mild or moderate to severe.
But we have had many people who have started experiencing anxiety episodes for the first time now. And anxiety has different manifestations, cognitive manifestations of thought, physical manifestations and emotional manifestations.
Speaking of what is thought, anxiety, that extreme concern that we feel at this moment about getting sick with COVID. That constant worry that we can’t control. That is the main part of the cognitive aspect of anxiety.
Then there is the physical part of anxiety. Anxiety is very of the body. So the anxiety is that sweating of the hands, the palpitations, the choking and the discomfort in the stomach, the discomfort, the physical fatigue. So it is a physical discomfort that we know does not have an origin in any other disease.
That pessimism that nothing is going to go well for us, being in that state that there is no light and we don’t see the sun anywhere, like that state of anguish.
It is to feel a fear of a high power, to literally feel that you are going to go crazy, that you are losing. And what happens? That now, as we know that the symptoms of COVID are precisely respiratory, then if you have a panic attack, you are thinking that you are sick and people saturate the hospitals thinking that they are symptoms of COVID, when they are really symptoms of a panic attack, precisely because of the issue of breathing.
Dealing With Anxiety To Get Back To Normal, Expert Advice
I have here someone who says “I have been anxious for a week because of the fear that I have with everything that is happening”, what can we say to her?
Anxiety is usually diagnosed after the person has been driving for six months. So we are usually talking about anxiety when people have already suffered from anxiety and we know that they are new episodes. However, if you have never felt it before, if you feel similar symptoms, let’s just say it is not considered an anxiety floor as such.
See a psychologist, find someone to talk to. There are many resources out there. Many bilingual therapists in Atlanta even have this consultation for now through media. By telehealth, hotels, psychology and we can talk a little bit on time about one of the platforms and a service that I offer.
What home remedy can we recommend for anxiety?
There are many very specific things you can do to relax emotionally and there are many resources too. Breathing is vital, essential at this time, especially since it is closely linked to the anxiety with that suffocation, right?
Learn to search, for example, guides, meditations and relaxations guided by YouTube. There are many resources that people can learn to handle, to have better breathing. There is yoga, the most important exercise always.
Other things are exercise, good sleep, and good nutrition. Those three things, if taken care of, are basic to any mental health disorder. So yeah, as long as we have all three things, let’s say, under control, that will help us reduce anxiety.
* You can see the full interview in the header video.
Filed Under: Dealing With Anxiety To Get Back To Normal
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