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Cubs Anxiety Disorder Is Real, And We All Had It When They Clinched

By  Kelly Bauer and DNAinfo Staff | October 13, 2017 8:45am | Updated on October 14, 2017 7:18pm

 Freaking out while watching the game? You're not alone. 
Cubs Anxiety Disorder
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CHICAGO — Feeling that Cubs game hangover this morning? We are too. 

During the epic, almost five-hour game, thousands of fans came down with what can only be described as Cubs Anxiety Disorder. Symptoms include stress-eating nachos, drinking too many beers and muttering profanity-laced prayers under your breath while hiding in your sweatshirt.

Frank Moore, a counselor in Lakeview, said he has "absolutely" heard people talking about their Cubs stress recently. Luckily, talk of Cubs anxiety has been "lighthearted" so far, he said.

"You almost can't get away from it," said Moore, himself a Cubs fan. "The Cubs are just something that they love, it's a team they love and it's a part of their life.

"A game like last night? First off: Breathe. Breathe deeply."

Going out (sans alcohol), a little bit of exercise and talking to friends can also help relieve stress after the hard-fought win, Moore said.

"Realize tomorrow is another day. And the Cubs, this is their third time to be able to get to the championship series," Moore said. "So, we've got some good history."

Breathing deeply — and celebrating the Cubs' win — can help now that Thursday's game is over. But what about those feeling stressed during future games?

"It's possible it's better to watch the games sometimes in a group, if they can," Moore said. "It's just a way, when you watch it in a group, to vent your frustrations off your friends and peers."

Grabbing a stress ball can also help relieve tension during playoff games, Moore said. The game announcements and the changing voice inflections of announcers can trigger anxiety for some, so Moore said some people will also turn down their TV volume.

Also important: Try to stay in the moment.

"Our brains go into this kind of 'fight or flight' mode when we have anxiety," Moore said. "Just breathe deeply and stay in the moment and realize things can change from moment to moment — especially with he Cubs.

"It's easy to get ahead of ourselves in our minds when it comes to anxiety because we're thinking about something in the future. Realize it's nto over until it's over."

Sports stress can really do some major damage. 

study by the New England Journal of Medicine looked at German fans during the 2006 World Cup and found that watching a stressful soccer match more than doubles the risk of a cardiovascular event.

Before last year's World Series, Dr. Ernest Wang at NorthShore University HealthSystem in Evanston said your Cubs game stress can do major damage. 

"It's going to be a range of things," said Wang, an emergency room physician. "Too much to drink, abdominal pain from too much eating, chest pain. Sometimes it's hard to parse out if it's the eating or if it's stress from the game."

Many fans have enough self-control to prevent overeating or overdrinking to the point of illness, but far fewer are able to handle by themselves the stress that can come with watching your team in the big game, Wang said.

Some fans are more susceptible to heart issues than others. Older men with existing health issues should know the risk of becoming too worked up during the World Series, Wang said. (The study showed that men were much more likely to suffer cardiac issues during sports viewing than women.)

"There's a risk for certain folks," Wang said. "You're getting anxiety about the game, getting worked up. I wouldn't wait. If it's potentially a heart problem, you should come in."

And what should you do if the Cubs have you overstressed?

"It's probably better to walk out of the room," Wang said. "If the problem persists, then you should probably seek attention."

Definitely don't wait until after the game ends to seek treatment, Wang said. That happens much more often than you might believe, he said.

"People don't come in until after" the game, he said.

Here are some more symptoms of Cubs Anxiety Disorder we spotted last night: 

 

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