The presidential election is driving people to their wits’ end, according to a new poll from the American Psychological Association.
The poll found more than half of Americans adults are stressed – regardless of party affiliation – about the election. To be specific, the poll found 52 percent of Americans ages 18 and older said the election was a somewhat or very significant source of stress. And 38 percent of respondents said political and cultural discussions on social media caused them stress.
Lynn Bufka, executive director for practice research and policy at the American Psychological Association, said in a news release that social media exacerbated the election with arguments, stories, images and video that range from factual to hostile and inflammatory.
The survey found that people who used social media were more likely to say the election caused them stress.
The survey found that the youngest and oldest voters – millennials and “Matures,” who were born pre-1946 – reported being most stressed by the election, compared to baby boomers and Generation X.
MedlinePlus, a project of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, summarized the poll findings and offered tips to keep calm heading into the Nov. 8 election:
▪ Read just enough to stay informed, but turn off the news feed.
▪ Be aware of how often you discuss the election with family, friends or co-workers and avoid talking about the election, if there’s a risk it could escalate.
▪ Instead of worrying about the election, which is unproductive, take action on issues that matter to you. For instance, through volunteer work and community groups.
▪ And most important of all: vote.