The Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on the Mental Health of Children and the elderly

Everyone is aware of the severe consequences of COVID-19 on a person’s physical health. But only a few have noticed the pandemic’s impact on the mental health of people.

According to a study in the UK, the percentage of the population with mental health issues has increased from 18.8% in 2018 to 27.3% in 2020. Of course, the most affected groups are young adults, women, and those having young children at home.

The United Nations has said that symptoms of depression observed in 2020 are 3 times more than those observed in 2019. Clearly, the pandemic’s impact on mental health is a global concern.

In this article, we will particularly discuss how the pandemic has affected the mental health of children and the elderly.

Impact on children

As early as March 2020, concerns had been raised about the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on the mental health of children.

It is sad to note that as we continue to deal with the pandemic, some of the fears are coming true.

During the first lockdown, there was a significant increase in symptoms of depression observed among children.

The University of Cambridge had conducted a study to see how the pandemic is affecting children. They started by selecting 168 children between the ages of 8 and 12. Then as the months went by, they examined the information they received from the teachers, parents, and guardians of these children.

The result? It was observed that children were showing more symptoms of depression now when compared to the time before the pandemic.

They said that if you randomly select a child from the group, there is a 70% chance that the child you picked is experiencing worse symptoms than what he or she experienced before the pandemic. That’s quite a concern!

Many children are experiencing mental health issues primarily because of school closure which has resulted in reduced social interaction and loneliness. A child’s mental health is vulnerable when he or she feels lonely.

Adding to the problem, a child may feel anxious about school and grades. As due to not going to school, the child is not involved in many play activities which are vital to lifting the mood.

The lockdown has, without a doubt, affected the mental health of many children!

Impact on the elderly

When the pandemic began, the elderly were among the first to be asked to self-isolate. In order to protect them and to prevent the health care systems from being over-burdened.

Being self-isolated for a prolonged time has had a big impact on the older generation. Due to loneliness, they are at a higher risk of depression and anxiety.

It has been observed that the elderly with pre-existing mental health conditions are now experiencing an increase in their symptoms. Those with no prior symptoms are now beginning to show symptoms.

Many have complained about headaches, migraine, anxiety attacks, moods swings, lack of motivation, and lack of good sleep among other issues.

According to a study, one out of 3 older ones say that their anxiety is now worse. One woman mentioned that the anxiety attacks she would experience 20 years ago have returned.

Many are overly anxious about getting infected and about the well-being of their family. Some are worried that they will never get to see life getting back to normal again. A few have even lost the confidence to carry out regular day-to-day activities and are becoming overly dependent.

The pandemic’s impact on mental health cannot be taken lightly. It is our responsibility to help those around us in whatever way possible. We at Aristone Solicitors are available for any kind of legal advice and mediation if needed, contact us at 01582 383 888 or email us at info@aristonesolicitors.co.uk

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