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Therapy can be expensive. Anxiety is further compounded by personal financial stress. For instance, people who reported that COVID-19 significantly impacted their ability to meet financial obligations were more likely to report symptoms of anxiety and depression.

It is hard enough to pay for basic living expenses. The prospect of spending a lot of money on even just a single counselling session can seem inaccessible.

If you are part of a family or culture that stigmatizes therapy and associates it with weakness, you might be more inclined to just keep quiet instead of risking difficult conversations. And when someone perceives the mental health system as a complex and unintuitive web with frequently contradictory opinions, the easiest thing to do is often nothing at all.

Faced with an unfortunate combination of personal, social, cultural and financial barriers, anxious people cope in different ways. Some might cope in healthy ways; maybe they find the right combination of social supports and healthy habits that are right for them. Or, they will cope in less healthy ways, the possibilities of which are seemingly endless, ranging from substance use, reliance on toxic relationships, to overworking.

For those who continue to struggle with anxiety and their loved ones seeking help, where can they go? Oftentimes, they reach out to mental health organizations, like Anxiety Canada, for access to resources. They might download Anxiety Canada’s MindShift CBT, a free app for anxiety management packed with interactive activities based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), a proven, evidence-based treatment for anxiety.

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