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Psychologist says fear is not the answer to Coronavirus

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SALINAS, Calif. (KION) Dr. Scott Lingen is simply seeing the tip of the iceberg at his practice. "I have people that are now having their sessions on Skype because they aren't leaving their home," said Lingen.

Across the county, stores are selling out of cleaning supplies, events are being cancelled and masks are the most common accessory amid Coronavirus (COVID-19) concern.

"I went to Walmart. They're completely out of everything," said Sylvia Mejia in Salinas.

"At my work I see people wearing masks, gloves and asking for hand sanitizer," said Carissa Leads in Santa Cruz.

Lingen specializes in helping people deal with their fears and understanding when they've taken it too far.

"When does it become maladaptive? When somebody says, I know what I'm going to do, I'm not going to leave my house for the next month and I'm going to watch every news outlet and scare myself to death," said Lingen.

When it comes to those who suffer from anxiety, Lingen recommends focusing on trusted sources like the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and public health officials.

"Any new virus brings a great deal of community concern," said Santa Cruz County Health Officer, Dr. Gail Newel at a press conference, Saturday.

Santa Cruz County recently announced its first case of the virus, but continue to remind the public of one thing. "While COVID-19 represents a serious public health threat. The risk to Santa Cruz County residents remains low. That's important to note. The risk to Santa Cruz County residents and visitors is low," said Newel.

Health / Monterey County / News / Salinas / San Benito County / Santa Cruz County
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Megan Meier

Megan Meier is a multi-media journalist at KION News Channel 5/46.


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