Everyone faces anxiety ‘in different ways’ amid this pandemic — expert

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 14) — Everyone is vulnerable to mental distress in times like a global health crisis. According to an expert, everyone experiences anxiety in different ways amid the new coronavirus pandemic.

“The most common issues everyone is dealing with is the sense of uncertainty,” according to In Touch Philippines Clinical Supervisor Dr. Julian Montano.

Montano told CNN Philippines that “we don’t know when this will end. We’re asking if we might have also been infected.”

He also said that “uncertainty leads to anxiety, and anxiety gives people fear.”

How are people dealing with the dread of uncertainty in these trying times?

Montano illustrated how different kinds of people go through anxiety- from children to the elderly, to millennials, couples, and those who are victims of domestic abuse.

“Children, for example, they are overloaded by time with their devices because they don’t know what to do. That opens problems to unclear websites, unregulated sites,” he said.

Meanwhile, Montano said that millennials face a kind of uncertainty that deals with their jobs and sources of income.

“The millennials are lonely, asking how about my job? Will I still have it? My business? My freelancing activities? These are the worries they have.”

He added that couples are also having a hard time adjusting to the situation, especially in the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine, since they cannot be with each other.

“There’s an increase also of domestic violence. This is another challenge that we have,” Montano said.

He pointed out that the elderlies might appear oblivious, but in reality, they also think about a lot of worries. Montano added that the existing challenge is focused on the feeling of anxiety.

“Anxiety is a mind game. We imagine things that we cannot control. Therefore, we become anxious,” he said.

Montano advised people to practice different coping techniques like self-regulating exercises such as relaxation, meditation, and focusing.

According to their website, In Touch Community Services is a leading provider of mental health services in the Philippines. Established in 1980, it is a volunteer-driven organization dedicated to promoting mental health and offering care and treatment to persons suffering from mental and emotional distress.

Here are the contact numbers of In Touch Philippines:

02-8893-7603

0917 800 1123

0922 893 8944