A recent poll conducted by the American Psychiatric Association found that more than one-third of Americans think the coronavirus crisis is seriously affecting their psychological health.
If you are feeling anxious, depressed, and angry, it’s understandable, as reported coronavirus cases have surpassed the terrifying mark of infecting 1 million people worldwide.
The United States has the largest number of infected individuals and Muslims around the country are reporting higher incidences of sleeplessness nights, anxiety, and confusion, as the death toll steadily rises daily.
“I haven’t been able to sleep for weeks. I am an entrepreneur and am currently out of work since the massive shutdown amid the pandemic. I am having trouble assisting my children with their digital learning, as I am desperately trying to find work to stabilize my family,” Aisha Turner, single mom of three, told AboutIslam.net.
Anxiety and stress are global crises, as mental health helplines have reported an exponential increase in phone calls to their crisis line.
Muslims are struggling to identify spiritual remedies to adjust their mind frame while easing their anxiety around the growing pandemic. Local imams and experienced scholars are working tirelessly to provide resources, support, and services virtually to their community to keep their hope and spirits high.
“I have benefitted from many online programs but more importantly I spend a lot of my time in zikr (remembrance). My favorite zikr is to whisper ya salaamu to myself repeatedly until I can sense the calmness in my own heart,” Saudia Shabazz shared with aboutislam.net.
Let’s address the four major problems that are impacting the mental health of the Muslim community and steps to address those issues.
Our lives have shifted dramatically during the past few weeks and many of us may not recognize the feelings of increased heart rate, muscle tension, and gastrointestinal distress as anxiety.
There are many tips to reduce anxiety and an individual should start with exploring self-management strategies like mindfulness, yoga, prayer/meditation, art, exercise, and a healthy diet. Additionally, Muslims should be encouraged to focus on gratitude and the many positive blessings they experience daily.
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