Paterson residents among the most stressed in New Jersey because of Covid-19, study says | Paterson Times Paterson Times

Paterson residents among the most stressed in New Jersey because of Covid-19, study says

By Jonathan Greene
Published: July 2, 2020

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Residents of Paterson are among the most stressed people in New Jersey because of Covid-19, according to a study by Babylon Health that looked at Twitter data.

Study looked at 2.5 million real-time tweets to find cities and states in the United States that were most stressed by the new coronavirus pandemic.

Tweets containing words related to the pandemic like “isolation,” “corona,” “pandemic,” “vaccine,” “ppe,” and “social distancing” were measured for stress levels using TensiStrength, algorithm that detects stress and relaxation levels in social media posts.

“My mom tested positive for covid and I’m f—ing devastated right now, I cannot lose my mom,” read one tweet reviewed in the study.

Fear dominated the high stress tweets looked at in the study.

“TensiStrength’s terms are not only synonyms for stress, anxiety and frustration but also terms related to anger and negative emotions because stress can be a response to negative events and can cause negative emotions,” Mike Thelwall, who devised the TensiStrength, said. He is professor of data science at the Wolverhampton University in the United Kingdom.

Paterson is the fifth most stressed city in New Jersey, according to Babylon Health. 31 percent of tweets by residents showed high level of stress related to Covid-19.

Paterson had the most cases of coronavirus in Passaic County. As of June 1, Paterson had 329 deaths related to Covid-19 and 6,703 confirmed cases.

Jersey City was ranked the most stressed city in New Jersey. Newark was second. Clifton was third. And Elizabeth was fourth, according to Babylon Health.

New Jersey is the 23rd most stressed state by Covid-19 in the United States.

Talking to people and keeping a journal can help to reduce stress and anxiety says Dr. Kirsten Macphee of Babylon Health.

“By writing down your thoughts and feelings you can stop ruminating and begin to understand them more clearly. Write a list of your priorities; what can you change now, what must you do to reach your goals?” Macphee said.


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