Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Prescription: A healthy dose of no news for election blues

Date:
November 2, 2012
Source:
Harris Health System
Summary:
Whether supporting President Barack Obama or Governor Mitt Romney, this year’s election will take people on a roller coaster of emotions from elation to anger depending on the results. To deal with post-election blues, psychiatrists prescribe a strong dose of no TV, radio, social media and Internet coverage.

Whether supporting President Barack Obama or Governor Mitt Romney, this year's election will take people on a roller coaster of emotions from elation to anger depending on the results. Harris Health System psychiatrist Dr. Asim Shah is prescribing a strong dose of no TV, radio, social media and Internet coverage to help with post-election blues.

"People need to be more accepting and less emotional about the results and realize that, in the short-term the election will not affect them," Shah, chief of Psychiatry at Harris Health Ben Taub Hospital and associate professor of the Menninger Department of Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine. "If you wake up and go to work or take your child to school the next day, you will still need to do those things as part of your life after the election."

Elections are emotionally charged events that affect people differently. For those who are more invested, the results could affect their mental health and well-being. It's natural to feel something after an election.

However, for some, the election blues will be difficult.

Shah says emotional reactions are normal and expected, but people with bouts of depression, anger and anxiety that last more than two weeks and cause functional impairments should seek medical care. He warns that people with outbursts tinged with threats of harming oneself or others also should be referred for help.

In 2004, Taiwan faced a hotly contested election. It affected the population greatly, Shah says. Psychiatrists later diagnosed about 10 percent of the population with depression and anxiety and subsequently coined the phrase -- post-election stress syndrome.

"You don't see a lot of people who are able to accept a decision so quickly that goes against them," Shah says. "And just telling people on the losing side, 'Oh don't worry, everything will be OK,' doesn't help. It just might make things worse."

Recommendations for dealing with election blues: • Turn off all TV, radio and Internet coverage (if necessary, listen only to non-partisan coverage) • Avoid conflict by not bringing up the topic • Change topic when it comes up • Realize that things aren't changing in the short-term no matter who wins • Concentrate on day-to-day activities that are part of life

Shah recommends giving people time to come to terms with the outcome. Enjoy activities like exercising, watching comedies, cooking, gardening or sporting events to distract from politics.

Additionally, avoid the problem of comfort eating, a habit that could easily add pounds or make one unhealthy as they try to cope with the results.

As a general rule, Shah subscribes to the idea of never mixing friendships with any discussions of sensitive topics like politics and religion.

"You save a lot of friendships and relationships that way," he adds.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Harris Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Harris Health System. "Prescription: A healthy dose of no news for election blues." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121102151339.htm>.
Harris Health System. (2012, November 2). Prescription: A healthy dose of no news for election blues. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121102151339.htm
Harris Health System. "Prescription: A healthy dose of no news for election blues." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121102151339.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) Sixteen large food and beverage companies in the United States that committed to cut calories in their products far surpassed their target. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stocks Hit All-Time High as Fed Holds Steady

Stocks Hit All-Time High as Fed Holds Steady

AP (Sep. 17, 2014) The Federal Reserve signaled Wednesday that it plans to keep a key interest rate at a record low because a broad range of U.S. economic measures remain subpar. Stocks hit an all-time high on the news. (Sept. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) The South's tobacco country is surviving, and even thriving in some cases, as demand overseas keeps growers in the fields of one of America's oldest cash crops. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins