As coronavirus infections and deaths rise across the country, people’s fears are rising. Throw weeks of staying at home into the mix, and it has become the perfect recipe for anxiety and stress.

Mental health experts say there is a way to get around it.

Robin Cole, the president of the Capital Region’s National Alliance on Mental IIlness, says it’s important to disconnect from TV and social media every now and then.

“We want to be aware of what’s going on in the world, but at times, we need to turn it off and walk away from it,” said Cole.

She also says staying in touch with friends and family is one of the best tools to manage anxiety.

“Talk to someone else … and learn some of the strategies that really helped them cope,” Cole said.

Cole says for anyone that is being treated by their doctor for mental illness, it’s important to stay in touch with their physician virtually.

It’s said meditation can alleviate stress, too. Mindfulness apps such as Calm and online yoga videos can help you do that.

UAlbany Center for Behavioral Health Director Dr. Dolores Cimini says now’s the time to try new things.

“Meditation programs and things we would do in the in person space are now in the virtual space,” said Dr. Cimini. “As much as this is a challenge for us right now, it also creates new opportunities.”

The National Alliance on Mental Illness also has a free helpline for anyone to reach out. You can call it at (518) 588‪-6949.