Visiting a doctor during a pandemic

Pandemic anniversary anxiety is real. A San Antonio doctor shares how to cope.

At this point last year, the world was reeling from the first effects of the new global pandemic. While strides have been made since then, anniversary-induced anxieties can be drudged up as people look back at the year we’ve endured.

Local expert Dr. Don McGeary, of UT Health San Antonio’s psychiatry and rehabilitation medicine department, said the anniversary anxiety is a very real and normal reaction to trauma.

“We’re hearing it from everyone,” the psychiatrist, who is seeing patients dealing with long term effects of the virus, said.

He said trauma anniversary reactions have been a component of trauma research for at least 100 years. Similar reactions surfaced in response to anniversaries of other historical events, such as the assassination of John F. Kennedy or the 9-11 terrorist attacks.

McGeary offered some guidance on how to cope with the reminders.

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