How to Manage Crowd Anxiety During the Holidays

Crowds are actually among the top ten fears that people have and that gets heightened over the holidays.

(Published Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017)

Crowds are actually among the top ten fears that people have and that gets heightened over the holidays.

Since holidays bring more people to roads, stores and celebrations, crowds can cause anxiety.

Domino's Pizza is tweaking its home delivery service for those times you're not at home.
After years of delivery right to your doorstep, Domino's drivers will now deliver to outdoor locations.
That includes beaches, parks, landmarks, and other outdoor locations across the country.
Domino's says its drivers will deliver to 150-thousand locations from the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, to the "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign.
The locations are now active and show up in the company's app or website as "Domino's Hotspots."
Customers pre-pay for their orders, select a location, and your pizza is on the way.
Previously, Domino's delivered to offbeat locations, but, the new service sets up designated drop off points.
The service was tested last fall in Miami before being rolled out nationwide.

(Published Monday, April 16, 2018)

Chief of psychiatry at Ben Taub and Baylor College of Medicine, Dr. Asim Shah, says crowd anxiety is common.

His first tip to tackle big events - locate the exits when you arrive.

"Before you enter or as soon as you enter you can mark down the exits so that if it's getting too bothersome, you need to know where to get out from. You also need to know in those situations that you are not alone."

In that case, bringing a friend can help.

Canadian lawmakers wore hockey jerseys on Monday to honor the victims and their families of that tragic bus crash in Canada that killed 16 people.
The bus was carrying the junior league Humboldt hockey team to a game when a tractor-trailer slammed into the bus.
Sixteen were killed and thirteen people were injured in the crash.
Today's remembrance was one of a number of events that honored the team and their families.
Earlier the lawmakers honored Rusty Staub, a major leaguer who played for the Montreal Expos and the New York Mets.

(Published Monday, April 16, 2018)

"When they have a group of people who are enjoying, they get less anxious," said Shah. "When they are alone, they get more anxious."

Another way to cope, focus on the reason you're there. For example, sporting events can be an easy way to focus on something other than the anxiety.

"So if you focus on the game as opposed to the crowd, that may relax you," he said.

But Shah warns, if you classify your anxiety as severe, start small.

Storms in Pennsylvania caused heavy damage to a large apartment building, leaving dozens without a place to live.
Residents of Luther Wood Apartments in Scranton have been evacuated after wind ripped the roof off the building. 
It happened just before 6 a.m. Monday.
As of 11 a.m., Scranton fire officials say 90-people have been evacuated from the building, and another 35 may be forced to leave.
A shelter is being set up to help the residents of the senior apartment complex.
No word on any injuries.

(Published Monday, April 16, 2018)

"As opposed to just jump onto this mega event," Shah said. "Doing those things systemically, would make more sense,"

At some events, everyone is leaving at once -- like sporting events or concerts -- Shah says if you can, try to wait until the crowds are gone.

Even though it means that you are staying in that environment longer, it may make it easier for you to have that clear path out.