What are the effects of the COVID-19 on mental health?

The effects of the COVID-19 on mental health are among the most prevalent illnesses in the United Kingdom and worldwide. Around one in five adults in the world experience some form of mental illness.

The COVID-19 -Coronavirus Disease of 2019- is undoubtedly the leading mental health problem because of disease, experience, physical distancing, stigma, and discrimination, alongside job losses in many places severely attacked by the pandemic.

Health care workers, patients with COVID-19 and other illnesses, children, women, youth, and the elderly are experiencing posttraumatic stress disorders, anxiety, depression, and insomnia because of the pandemic.

Because of the pandemic, individuals with no form of mental health history are now experiencing it, and the health condition of individuals with pre-existing mental crises is exacerbated.

For this article, I would like to streamline the effects of covid-19 on mental health, especially patients with the virus, health care workers, children, and adults in no particular order.

 9 effects of the COVID-19 on mental health

1. High levels of anxiety

According to various sources, adults in the US experience stress and anxiety of up to forty-five percent. Thirty-three percent of people experience a high level of anxiety in the UK since the beginning of the pandemic.

Simultaneously, a survey carried out In Italy identified thirty-seven percent posttraumatic stress symptoms, twenty-one percent stress, twenty percent severe anxiety, seventeen percent depressive symptoms, and seven percent insomnia among respondents. 

2. Economic impact

Although there is insufficient proof to explain or measure the extent that people will suffer from mental health conditions resulting from the impact of covid-19, the problem may linger even after the pandemic. As far as it goes, imposing measures to curtail the spread of the pandemic such as social distancing, nose mask-wearing, case of stigma, and social support breakdown may contribute to a short-term mental health problem. While the economic impact resulting from job losses may likely cause a long-term mental health crisis.

3. Posttraumatic stress

The direct impact of covid-19 on those that contracted the virus can not be quantified. A recent study postulated that about ninety-six point two percent of inpatients are experiencing posttraumatic disorder in China. It is believed that this condition may continue for the next two years, which diminishes the quality of life by implication. Also, the study suggested that individuals that survived the pandemic may further generate long-term consequences that will require enormous medical interventions.

4. Social distancing

Strict lockdown measures have also heightened the cases of stress and anxiety, especially among children. Unlike adults, children are highly susceptible to develop adverse psychological disorders. This makes them an easy target for the pandemic. Loss of parent or guardian and quarantine away from loved ones contribute awfully to their deteriorating mental health conditions. Also, children are easily bored. Hence, lack of social interaction and distancing may trigger mental health crises very quickly among them.

5. Healthcare workers at risk

Another effect of the COVID-19 on mental health that poses a significant concern is among health care workers. As the world battles the pandemic and measures taken to find a lasting solution to the virus, those at the frontline are usually the easy target. As in the US, China, the UK, and every other place worldwide, reports have revealed that health care workers suffer disturbing anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress, and suicidal thoughts. Due to lack of sleep, heavy workload, fear, and discrimination, many healthcare workers face an increased rate of depression. In many situations, medical doctors, nurses, and other health care workers in the emergency unit show a greater level of mental health problems than those in different units.

6. Fear of death

Before covid-19, aged individuals are usually exposed to mental health challenges that result from various causes. The pandemic has no doubt fuelled this condition among the older generation. The fear of death from the virus, social distancing, loss of jobs, separation from families and friends, etc., are few factors contributing to mental health problems among older people.

7. Depression

Patients with chronic health challenges also suffer from the disruption of the health care system. Why? The effects of the COVID-19 on mental healthhave made it difficult to easily and quickly access medical attention. The absurd level of stress related to timely accessing health care intervention has caused many of these patients’ mental problems. Furthermore, more women slip into depression than men and youth between the age of eighteen to thirty experience peritraumatic distress index.

8. Weak healthcare systems

Sub-Sahara Africa is the only area in the world with little or no documentation regarding the effects of the COVID-19 on mental health. With a daily increase in the number of cases reported and casualties recorded, the people are likely to experience severe mental illness. The weak health care system in Africa is another contributory factor that further aids people’s mental illness.

9. Job loss and the effects of the COVID-19 on mental health

Many people are suffering from mental health problems owning to the pandemic. The impact of losing a job and livelihood can be severe on people. The worst affected are people from low-income countries like most countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Even though many countries are putting up measures to tackle the pandemic and care for the people’s mental health, it is still pretty apparent that the world has a long way to go to ensure a reduced rate of mental health challenges.

2 Comments

  1. Thank you Light in the darkness Community for the lives you have been able to impact.
    Truly covid 19 is a real problem in Africa and Nigeria is not left out.
    There has to be an end.
    God help us.

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