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How you can ease ‘Election Stress Disorder’

Voters' focus shifting to Election Day as early voting period ends
Voters' focus shifting to Election Day as early voting period ends

Living through a global pandemic has been stressful for most everyone. Add to it a polarizing presidential election and you have a recipe for anxiety and angst. “I’m scared, my stomach hurts every day, I’m having insomnia, never had it in my life, because of this election,” says Aric Roman.

Roman is one of millions of Americans that are experiencing what experts have dubbed “Election Stress Disorder.”

Cleveland Clinic psychologist Dr. Adam Borland says the level of contention in this election isn’t helping, causing feelings of anxiety, tension and a lack of control.

“I’m seeing a tremendous amount of people dealing with stress, anxiety, panic type symptoms as the election gets closer,” Dr. Borland says.

According to a recent survey by the American Psychological Association, 68 percent of respondents say the election is a significant source of stress.

“One of the most important things is to manage your media consumption,” says Amy Morin, editor-in-chief of VeryWell Mind.

Dr. Borland agrees.

“I think it’s really important to take a step away from those sources of political stress and find other healthy activities to engage in,” he says.

Aric Roman says strong opinions on social media ended life long friendships.

“I have lost friends.  True, real friends,” he says.

Roman isn’t alone.  40 percent of Americans say they don’t have a close friend that supports an opposing candidate.

Doctors say if you are having trouble controlling your feelings and levels of stress to seek help.  Most practices are doing in-person and virtual therapy appointments.