During the initial year of the pandemic, there was an immense increase in anxiety and depression across the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) performed a study that revealed who was affected and how mental health services were affected over the course of the pandemic. The results prompted 90% of countries in the world to incorporate support for mental health as part of their pandemic response plan. Even with these increases, there were major gaps in the coverage provided, and there is still a significant concern.
Understanding How The Pandemic Impacted Mental Health
One underlying cause of social anxiety came from the isolation required to maintain physical health. Combine this with financial instability and fundamental changes in how work was approached and the change of familial traditions during this time, and mental health was sure to suffer. People everywhere struggled with the feeling of loneliness, fear for those close to them, the suffering of those infected, and grief over the loss of loved ones to COVID. Those who worked in health care were particularly affected, reporting a marked increase in suicidal ideation.
The sector that had the worst degree of impact on mental health was younger individuals and women. These people were particularly likely to do more self-harming behaviors and have greater feelings of being suicidal. Those who had pre-existing physical health conditions such as heart disease, asthma, and cancer were even more likely to experience mental disorder symptoms.
Unsurprisingly there was no indicated increase in vulnerability to the disease among those with mental health disorders. However, those who have such disorders demonstrate a greater likelihood of being hospitalized, experiencing severe symptoms, and dying from COVID-19 infection. The more severe the mental disorder, the greater risk indicated by the study.
A greater instance of mental health problems was closely tied to the mental health services available, seeing disruption from the pandemic. In many areas, this meant that there simply weren’t enough mental health services available for the growing number of people who needed them. Most notably, those with neurological conditions and substance-abuse disorders were the most severely affected. Dedicated efforts at responding to the pandemic meant that this situation had greatly improved by the end of 2021. However, gaps in available care still exist. This proves it’s more important than ever to reach out to your mental health providers and work with them to get the care and support you need during these stressful times.
Schedule Your Visit With A Mental Health Provider Today
As the pandemic begins to wane, the weight of mental health concerns can continue if left untreated. Speaking to mental health provider is the best way to ensure you get the care you need. With the ongoing heightened need for mental health care, it’s important to schedule early to ensure you’re seen as soon as possible. Hopefully, the waning of the pandemic will lead to a reduced need to ensure that mental health care continues to be available for those suffering from COVID-related PTSD. Call today to get care!