Both adults and children are experiencing mental health problems for the first time as a result of being cooped up inside due to the COVID-19 lockdowns. Fears and worries over job insecurity, bereavement over COVID-19 deaths, the breakdown of relationships and the long periods of isolation are causing people to have psychotic episodes, mania, anxiety and depression. Some even have to be taken to the hospital because of how difficult staying in lockdown has been for people’s mental well-being.
“Lockdown anxiety” affecting millions of people under stay-at-home orders
All of this is according to the Royal College of Psychiatrists in the U.K., who surveyed psychiatrists across Great Britain. They found that four in 10 psychiatrists in the country are reporting an increase in the number of people and new patients seeking urgent and emergency mental health support during the lockdown.
The CEO of one mental health trust said that they are seeing a lot of young men aged 18 to 25 seeking mental health care and requiring admission. He stated that one of the issues raised is that people are no longer working.
“One woman rang us recently and said her partner was walking around their house like a zombie because he wasn’t working and couldn’t provide for the family and had just snapped,” he said. Previous research has suggested that men aged 18 to 25 years old are the most affected by the lockdowns – and are also the most likely to break quarantine. (Related: The stigma around mental health is KILLING men: How to care for someone who is struggling with mental illness and addiction.)
The royal college is warning that, after eight weeks of lockdown, the country’s mental health services could become overwhelmed by “a tsunami of mental illness.” The United Nations has broadcast similar warnings, stating that governments should prepare for “a coming surge in mental health problems.”
While the mental health problems may be affecting young men more, everybody seems to be dealing with some type of mental health concern, including young kids and teenagers who are finding it difficult to cope with isolation, the halting of their education and the general disruption to their routine. In fact, a psychiatrist reported to the royal college that the lockdown in the U.K. has “exacerbated behavioral difficulties in children.”
Listen to this special mini-documentary from the Health Ranger Report as Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, lays out a rational plan to end the lockdowns and the coronavirus pandemic.
How to take care of your mental health during a lockdown
Pandemics are terrifying. This fear can be exacerbated by extended lockdown periods. While the stay-at-home orders are still in place, here are some ways to prevent your mental well-being from deteriorating:
- Manage the media you consume — While it is important to remain updated with what is going on, know your limits concerning the news content you are taking in. If you feel too overwhelmed, take a step back and focus your attention on other matters for a while.
- Talk to your family — If you have children at home, you need to be open with them about what is happening. Explain the facts to them, and discuss what they may have heard about the pandemic. Engage with them in an appropriate manner without causing them any alarm.
- Stay connected — While you may be unable to meet your friends and loved ones physically, you can still get in touch with them through other ways, such as through text messages and video calls. Maintaining a strong support system can help relieve you of stress and make you feel less anxious.
- Take care of your stress levels — If you are feeling stressed, practice some stress management techniques, such as eating a balanced and nutritious meal, getting enough sleep and meditating.
A lot of people’s mental health problems are stemming from the uncertainty that an extended lockdown is bringing, both to the health of their loved ones and to their jobs. Learn more about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental and physical health at Pandemic.news.