MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Many Twin Cities stores were packed with customers stocking up on food and supplies Thursday.

“It was crazy in there,” said Debbie Rosenberg Charloff, from St. Louis Park.

Rosenberg Charloff was shopping at Costco in St. Louis Park. She said the checkout line went to the back of the store. Staff limited bottled water purchases to two packs per household.

Social interactions are changing, too.

“Going forward I probably won’t shake hands or hug but I don’t really know,” Rosenberg Charloff said.

“The anxiety is quite high,” said Cheryl Bemel, a doctor with Allina Health.

Bemel says managing the information in the news and on social media is key, especially if you see pictures online of empty store shelves.

“Buying cartloads and cartloads and cartloads,” Bemel said. “That is not what we’re being advised to do.”

Bemel says to listen to the advice of the CDC and Minnesota Department of Health.  Right now MDH is telling Minnesotans they should have enough food and supplies for a couple of weeks if you got sick and need to stay home.

Perhaps most importantly, Bemel says higher stress can interfere with the immune system, so do your best to take care of yourself.

“We’ll wait it out, wait for things to go back to normal,” Malcolm Williams, from Minneapolis, said.

Target’s CEO said earlier this week that the company would be working to increase the availability of high demand items like medicine and cleaning supplies.

Kate Raddatz

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