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Many Americans stressed by election, APA survey finds

If you feel this election year has been bothering you more than previous ones, you’re not alone. Fifty-two percent of Americans are being stressed out by the 2016 presidential election, according to the American Psychological Association’s Stress in America survey.

The survey was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of the APA. Breaking down the results, the age group most stressed out about the election is people 71 and older. The second is millennials, which is people aged 19-37.

For Kitanna Belnap, an Idaho State University student, the breaking point has already been reached.

“I jump on Facebook and if I see any candidate’s name I just tune it out,” Belnap said.

This year’s presidential race has been marred with personal jabs, constant coverage of those jabs and very heated arguments in-person and online. It’s the arguments that has caused Belnap to step away from all of it.

“It’s so polar and everybody has such strong opinions and no one’s really willing to budge,” she said. “The lack of compromise, the lack of seeing larger issues, and the lack of civility when we’re talking about candidates — it makes you not want to be involved.”

If you’re feeling stressed or fatigued by the election, Ric Boyce, the director of the Mental Health Specialists in Chubbuck, recommends varying your news consumption. That way you don’t always watch or read things about the election. Also, to vary what you do day-to-day in general.

“Take breaks, make sure you’re getting varied activities in your day, like exercising,” he said. “Make sure you take time to do things that are relaxing.”

Boyce also said to accept whatever happens on Election Day and to remember our political system and three branches of government are there for stability.

Also, most importantly, seek professional help if needed.

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