The consequences of the pandemic on mental health are yet to be seen, and will last for a long time

From the moment the wave of the corona pandemic hit the planet, in parallel with the research of a new virus, the search for drugs, the controversy about vaccines, the question arose - what will be the impact of the epidemic of Covid-19 and all social norms such as social distance, "closure", "New normalities", on mental health. Maybe this issue was not in the foreground due to always new news about the number of infected people, new vaccines, etc., but it is certainly present from the beginning, from the background. Because predictions are that the consequences are yet to be seen and have begun to be. The important thing is that this aspect of health is no less important than the one that is directly endangered by the virus. Mental health is what it will mean to us when this whole pandemic passes.

Disruption of normal life during the Covid-19 pandemic poses a serious threat to the mental health and well-being of the general population. Panic and fear of illness, together with locking up and physical distancing, can lead to social isolation, loneliness, inactivity, limited access to basic services, increased food and alcohol intake, and reduced family and social support, especially for the elderly and vulnerable groups. all of this is associated with long-term deterioration in mental health.

Not to mention the various forms of depression, where they existed before the depression and are thus only intensified. And yes, a rush of multiplied hatred due to the frustration of isolation and fear. There has been hatred before as well as depression, but the accumulated negative energy can only erupt, what is seen now is probably not all.

Thus, levels of depression, anxiety and stress were among the highest triggers for mental health, and still are. According to scientists, high levels of stress, anxiety and depression caused by social isolation, quarantine and locking, as well as the duration of "locking" measures significantly affect the mental health and well-being of the general population, with significant differences in depression and anxiety between people in quarantine, and people who are not in quarantine. Also, exposure to the media could be one of the possible explanations for the high level of stress, because during quarantine people pay more attention to the news, i.e the media.

There are also additional triggers such as social and economic status, regions prone to conflicts and fights, both interethnic and racial and everyone else. It will be much harder to go through a pandemic and preserve the mental health of those who have lower incomes, are on the margins of society, or live in conflict environments. So, places where recently there were wars or environments where there are criminal confrontations, insecure neighborhoods, etc.

From the point of view of psychiatrists, it can be assumed that the pandemic has a high chance of serving as a trigger or worsening the already existing symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder in people who have an obsession with infections and a compulsive need for disinfection, and some of them can become chronic phobic, if they don't receive appropriate psychotherapeutic help and support. At the same time, it is quite possible that stress will leave deeper traces on the mental health of those who have experienced painful life experiences in the past, because that could restore the memory of the trauma. It should be added that it is realistic to expect that even after the pandemic passes, many people will remain anxious for fear of new mutated strains of the corona virus.

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