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Situational anxiety on the rise due to the pandemic

If you suffer from severe anxiety symptoms, you could have an anxiety disorder.

BRYAN, Texas — As society begins to open back up with more people getting vaccinated each day, some may not be ready to adjust to this new normal yet. 

Throughout the last year, everyone had to change their routines to protect themselves from the coronavirus. Change and a new normal can cause one to have situational anxiety.  

“If you can power through it then that’s very normal and you’re strong and you can do this. If it’s keeping you from going to work and you’re afraid to go in, and you’re not going in, then it’s something to talk to a doctor about,” said NAMI Board of Directors Erin Wilhite. 

If you suffer from severe anxiety symptoms, you could have an anxiety disorder.

“Anxiety disorder is debilitating. It’s going to cause you to be overwhelmed, incapable. You may feel apprehension, dread, you may feel tense, you may feel restless or irritable. Anticipating the worst and watchful for signs of danger, those are all emotional symptoms." Wilhite said. "There are physical symptoms. You can have to go to bathroom a lot, you can have a pounding or racing heart, shortness of breath, upset stomach, sweating, tremors, twitches, headaches, fatigue and insomnia."

As you make your way back into society and to the workplace, Wilhite said it is okay to be cautious. 

She added that setting a “normal” routine is key to powering through situational anxiety. 

“If you’ve been living at home all this time and are not going anywhere, your schedule might be wonky. You might be staying up all night and sleeping all day and have to get back with the work world." Wilhite said. "If that’s the case, then back off your sleep and anticipate going back to work. Drink lots of water, all the healthy things we’re suppose to be doing, but think about them. Make a plan when you do that, then you feel more in control.” 

Situational anxiety can be recurring, and it can also develop into anxiety disorder or it can be a secondary to another mental illness.  

NAMI Brazos Valley holds weekly family support groups to provide that community for those who are suffering. Click here to sign up.