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The Link Between Experiences of Racism and Stress and Anxiety for Black Americans

Updated: Sep 3, 2020

Within the Black community, we generally acknowledge and discuss experiences of racism and the detrimental impact of racism on equitable access to resources (including education, housing, health care, etc.). We less frequently discuss the detrimental impact racism often has on our mental health. In this article, we draw attention to the link between experiences of racism and mental health, with a specific focus on anxiety disorders and symptoms, which are among the most commonly diagnosed mental health disorders in the United States. We also discuss coping strategies that may be beneficial in the face of experiences of racism. It is important to emphasize that we, as Black Americans, are not at all responsible for the existence or experience of racism and unfairly are burdened with the responsibility of coping with the painful existence of these oppressive experiences.

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