Healthy ways to cope with stress during coronavirus pandemic

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KANSAS CIT, Mo. — It’s been nearly two weeks since counties across the Kansas City metro started issuing stay-at-home orders.

By now, space inside those four walls may be feeling a little small, but there are healthy ways to cope.

Mental health centers have transitioned to Telehealth in an effort to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and continue care for patients.

“When the camera finally fires up and you get that face to face, I’m seeing a lot of relief,” Dr. Gregory Nawalanic uses Zoom.

He said there’s an added level of security on calls. So patients can feel safe during sessions.

“It’s HIPAA compliant, which is important to preserve the privacy of the session and patients health information,”Nawalanic said.

Finding a quiet place when the whole family is home is a different story. It’s one of the main challenges his patients have experienced. Day by day, they’re finding productive ways to adapt.

“I have a patient who did the session via Zoom with his cellphone from his car, outside of his house,” Nawalanic said.

Nawalanic said some of the best ways to cope with being cooped up is to first acknowledge your anxiety. Then, go for a walk, FaceTime a friend, eat healthy and stick to a routine.

Nawalanic said we also need to curb humorous “memes” on social media about drinking our way through the quarantine.

“Alcohol is a depressant,” Nawalanic said. “It’s also never been demonstrated to improve anyone’s ability to actively adaptively cope with anything.”

Improve stressful moments in a healthy way with breathing techniques, aromatherapy or take a timeout.

“I’m trying to encourage people to just give themselves a break,” Nawalanic said. “Perfection is an ideal that we just have to leave on the side of the road somewhere.”

Nawalanic ensures people that the resources are still in place for you to reach out and receive help.

FOX4 wants you to remember “You Matter.” We have resources available at fox4kc.com/youmatter.

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