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No, It's Not Just You: This Election Is Stressing People Out

This undated photo shows people at voting booths.
Maya Sugarman / KPCC
This undated photo shows people at voting booths.

No, It's Not Just You: This Election Is Stressing People Out
No, It's Not Just You: This Election Is Stressing People Out GUEST: Lynn Bufka, associate executive director for practice research and policy, American Psychological Association
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The 2016 election is taking a toll on American’s mental health. A survey this month from the American Psychological Association found the election is a very or somewhat significant source of stress for 52 percent of American adults.

Both Democrats and Republicans reported high levels of election-related stress, though use of social media made a big difference. Fifty-four percent of adults who use social media were stressed out by the election, compared to 45 percent of adults who don’t use it.

“Election stress becomes exacerbated by arguments, stories, images and video on social media that can heighten concern and frustration, particularly with thousands of comments that can range from factual to hostile or even inflammatory,” said Lynn Bufka, the APA’s associate executive director for practice research and policy.

The group has several suggestions for relieving election stress, including stepping away from the 24-hour coverage of the candidates and voting early.

“By voting, you will hopefully feel you are taking a proactive step,” the APA says in its report. “Find balanced information to learn about all the candidates and issues on your ballot (not just the presidential race), make informed decisions and wear your ‘I voted’ sticker with pride.”

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Bufka joined KPBS Midday Edition on Monday with election tips.

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