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The COVID-19 pandemic has ushered in unprecedented stress worldwide. A November Gallup poll found that 76 percent of adults in the United States rate their mental health positively, representing a nine-point decline from 2019. This assessment of their mental health is worse than it has been at any point in the last two decades.
Similarly, a survey by the American Psychological Association (APA) conducted during the first wave last year found that the average reported stress level for U.S. adults related to the pandemic was 5.9. When asked to rate their stress level in general, the average reported stress for U.S. adults is 5.4. The APA noted that this is significantly higher than the average stress level reported in 2019, which was 4.9. The shift marks the first significant increase in average reported stress since the survey began in 2007.
Of note for American Muslims: the APA found that people of color (who make up the majority of the Muslims in the U.S.), are more likely than white adults to report significant stressors in their life as a result of the pandemic. In particular, getting coronavirus (71 percent versus 59 percent, respectively), basic needs (61 percent versus 47 percent), and access to health care services (59 percent versus 46 percent).
The pandemic has also been exceptionally stressful for parents. Nearly half of parents (46 percent) said their stress level was high (between eight and 10 on a 10-point scale where one meant “little or no stress” and 10 meant “a great deal of stress”), compared with 28 percent of adults without children who said the same. Parents’ biggest fears related to not being able to access food, housing, and health care services. Another significant stressor was fear of missing major family milestones, such as weddings and graduation ceremonies.
Such unprecedented stress calls for unprecedented self-care by turning to God as the Source of all assistance, relief, and hope. Spirituality heals stress.
May Allah relieve our stress and bless us with ease very soon, as He has promised He will: “For indeed, with hardship (will be) ease. Indeed, with hardship (will be) ease” (Quran 94: 5-6).
Sound Vision Team
Sound Vision’s Salam Text Line
If you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed, please know that free, professional, anonymous, and confidential help is one text away. Please text SALAM to 741741 to reach our Salam Text Line.
25 Ways to Handle Stress & Anxiety
Stress is life. Stress is anything that causes mental, physical, or spiritual tension. There is no running away from it. All that matters is how you deal with it. This article does not deal with the factors of stress, anxiety, and depression, nor is it clinical advice. If you feel depressed, you are not alone. It has been estimated that 75 to 90 percent of all visits to primary care physicians in America are for stress-related problems. This is why it is wise to consult a doctor if you are having physical symptoms of stress. However, here are some tips that can help from a spiritual perspective.
19 Tips to Help Your Child Deal With Stress
To know if your child is suffering from stress, it is important to watch for any changes in behavior. There are several things that parents, teachers, relatives and others who are involved in caring for children can do to help relieve stress in children. The following tips can correct a faulty belief system as well as help relieve some of the symptoms of stress. However, these suggestions are not meant to replace medical and psychological attention.
12 Ways to care for Loved Ones with Depression
Signs and symptoms of depression vary from person to person. While professional counselling and medical intervention are highly recommended for cases involving serious or chronic forms of clinical depression, there is a lot you can do to ease the situation that your loved one is going through.