~Article by Luci Terrazas~
It’s pandemic times. Every day we are being flooded with bad news through social media, TV channels, radio stations, and even when chatting with family and friends. The coronavirus outbreak is not only spreading around the world, but the fear of an uncertain tomorrow is also spreading. Those who already suffer from mental health disorders like anxiety and depression can feel the heavy impact of such a distressing time. Watching the numbers of COVID-19 cases increasing while experiencing the loneliness of social distance, is proving a difficult mental health burden to bear.
Every day, scrolling down our social media profiles, we see people trying to engage with their community through every tool that the internet has provided us so far. We also try to laugh along when we relate to the numerous memes that describe the challenge of staying in and being away from a social life with the people we love. We have all heard at some point that “no man is an island” (Title of a famous poem by John Donne. Worth checking out if you’re looking for new poetry to fulfill your quarantine days), but we’re now actually experiencing what the lack of human contact is actually like and it is not easy.
On the ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America) website, you can find helpful information and suggestions on ways to cope with anxiety. Among meditation and yoga, they mention relaxation techniques to minimize stress. One of these techniques is a combination of calming the mind & body through good nutrition.
Mindfully sipping on tea can have powerful meditative effects. Tea is rich in natural plant chemicals with stress-reducing properties and the warm water is simply soothing. In my family, a cup of tea to help us feel better whenever we feel sad, scared, sick, or anxious is a cherished tradition that has always worked well for me. So, here’s a list of my favorite infusions that might help you as part of a treat(ment) to cope with negative feelings.
Take a deep breath, put some fuzzy socks on, and call your favorite pals while sipping one of these delightful teas:
Spearmint tea: helps reducing stress, frustration, fatigue, and anxiety. It’s also known as a natural muscle relaxant.
Baby Chrysanthemum tea: well-known calming and stress-soothing tea. Also, a great relaxing tea that helps with insomnia and reducing irritability. A great sleep time tea!
Lavender tea: other great bedtime tea. Highly soothing, a great tea to combat stress and anxiety while helping you to have a great night of sleep.
Green tea: contains polyphenols, an antioxidant micronutrient that helps combat anxiety and stress. Although green tea contains caffeine, the levels are not as high as a cup of coffee. This tea will give you a calm focused feeling.
Rose Buds tea: a sweet and perfumed tea that is known for helping with anxiety and providing relaxation.
Now, more than ever, it’s important to practice self-care to protect our mental health. My version includes a cup of tea. What does self-care mean to you?
~About Luci, the author~
My name is Luci and I'm a Brazilian learning to live in San Francisco. I studied Education & Linguistics back in Brazil and that's how I ended up learning new languages and falling in love with a French-American guy. I'm quite into sports, but my perfect day is reading a book on a sunny beach with ice cream for lunch. My favorite tea changes according to the weather or my mood, but currently I'm all about the Tropical Rooibos. I'm also a sucker for iced & boba tea, I won't hide it.