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Epidemic of Mental Health Issues Amidst A Global Pandemic

Epidemic of Mental Health Issues Amidst A Global Pandemic
- Yajush Tripathi, GNLU, Gandhinagar

Mental health is the measure of psychological well-being of a person. Generally, physical health is given much heed but in reality mental health is equally important because if there are mental issues then it can lead to anxiety and depression which can eventually lead to self-harm infliction. So, it is very important to maintain mental health. But mental health issues seem inevitable in today’s day and age, because an average man’s life is bombarded with ton of problems from various aspects like financial, social, economic, political, etc. It is considered almost impossible for a man to live without hampering his/her mental health. There are limited opportunities in the world and the population is growing in geometric progression, so almost everyone at some point in his/her life would feel discontentment and that in result would affect their mental health. Therefore there are numerous reasons like financial instability, family problems, self-doubt, failure, anger, envy, jealousy, etc. because of which mental health is affected. But generally, people ignore the state of their mental being, because of their daily household work, office work and various other commitments but now, because of covid-19 pandemic and lockdown people have gone into introspection and now they have to face their problems by evaluating oneself. Because of this reason mental health issues have augmented.

How can it be said that mental health issues in this lockdown have aggravated?
There has been an increase in the number of cases of self-harm infliction among people. There has also been increase in the number of people who are searching “suicide” on Google. There has also been a rampant increase in the cases of people facing anxiety and depression. According to a study conducted by suicide prevention India in May 2020there has been an increase of 50% in the people who have developed a tendency of suicidal ideate. Anxiety, job loss, loneliness, stress and financial security are considered to be the main reasons because of which people have started to develop this kind of tendency. According to studies, 61% of Indians are facing mental health issues because of the looming lockdown due to which their financial security has been jeopardized.  Young people have been affected the most by the lockdown because they are fragile and volatile and they have not developed a well-developed coping mechanism to fight the mental health issues amidst the lockdown. It has been stated that 27% of teenagers are facing this toll.

Therefore, there has been an increase in the number of cases of mental health issues in this lockdown and there are certain reasons for that which needs to be addressed.

What are the causes of this aggravation? 

There are several reasons because of which the mental health issues have exacerbated. The reasons are-

•Isolation- As a result of the covid-19 pandemic, lockdown has been imposed. Many people are stuck in their homes and they are not allowed to roam freely so as to contain the spread of the corona virus. Therefore, social ties have been cut off and people have started to feel lonely. They have been isolated, this in turn have aggravated mental health issues of people because they have no one to share their problems. Some of them are even not in their homes, they have been stuck somewhere alone far from their homes, which has caused loneliness which in turn has aggravated the above-mentioned issue. Ergo, isolation has made people lonely and has made them socially distant. People generally over think during isolation as a result of that they get into melancholy which in turn causes anxiety and stress, which in result hamper their mental health.

•Financial Instability- Nearly all the sectors are facing the extreme brunt of the covid 19 pandemic. Many sectors have temporarily stopped paying their employees because of financial crisis. The situation after covid-19 pandemic is very obscure and the financial toll on people is very high due to the lockdown, so there is a situation of financial instability that has cropped up. People are now not certain about their jobs, as a result of that there is an issue of financial instability hovering over common people. This issue has caused stress among people which in turn has affected their mental health
•Uncertainty of future- Due to covid-19 pandemic, there has been a state of lockdown. It is considered very important for the safety of everyone. But this lockdown seems perpetual if taken into consideration the current situation of the pandemic. In India itself, 50,000 cases are increasing per day but simultaneously unlocking has also begun, but many industries are still shut down. The economy is also suffering and many employees as a result of that are not getting remuneration. Many people are in disdain because of this situation. They are very uncertain about their future because of that anxiety and depression have been inculcated in people. That in turn has affected the mental health of people.
Therefore, these are only few of the important causes for this aggravation. There are various other causes like increase in family problems, increase in overthinking among people, etc. All these reasons cause anxiety and depression which in result affect the mental health of people.

What are the effects of the aggravation?

Mental health issues are grave problems which need to be reckoned with. These issues have been aggravated to a great extent because of the causes mentioned above. The aggravation of these issues causes a huge amount of stress, anxiety and depression. It can even result into panic attacks and mood swings. People tend to stay aloof when they are battling with mental issues this in itself exacerbates the already prevalent issues which in turn causes more anxiety and depression in the person battling with these issues. 
All these factors like stress, anxiety, depression, mood swings and panic attacks which are both the symptoms and the after-effects of mental health issues culminate to force a person to inflict self harm upon himself and in the worst case scenario, a person might also try to take his own life if the culmination of the above mentioned factors is very strong. Therefore, mental health issues have very delirious effects on a person, so it is very necessary to deal with it and not to ignore it. 

What are the ways by which the aggravation can be diminished?

Mental health issues can have delirious effects that can change the whole metamorphosis of a person. So it is very vital to combat these issues as early as possible. In regular times, it is fairly difficult to get rid of mental health issues because a person suffering from it resists to talk about it and in the period of lockdown it becomes all the way more difficult to combat these issues because of the nature of the lockdown. Still people ought to combat these issues and for that society needs to craft out the ways which can be implemented during this period.

The most effective way by which it can be combated is, by sharing problems with your loved ones. The issues that a person faces, he should share those with his family or friends so that he can get advices from them and in turn could incorporate them and get out of the issue. If the problem is grave then psychiatric help should be sought. In these times, telepsychiatry and teletherapy can act as ways to combat these issues. By these ways, one has high chance to combat these issues.

To combat this problem in a holistic manner, government can promote awareness campaigns about mental health. Webinars and meetings can be conducted to spread the awareness. Therefore, these are the ways by which this aggravation can be reduced in this lockdown. These ways are limited because of the nature of the pandemic, nevertheless even if these ways are effectively implemented then these changes can also bring mountain of changes.


Mental health issues are very prevalent in this lockdown period. It has been aggravated because of the current situation, but it was always prevalent in the society because of the structure of the society itself. These issues are indispensable because of the structure of the society in which we live in.  Ill Virtues like envy, toxic competitiveness and animosity have given birth to issues like anxiety, depression and stress, before there were ways to combat this but now because of the lockdown the measures have become limited and as a result it has been aggravated. So now one has to follow basic good virtues on which our society has been formed in order to come out of this and these virtues are compassion, integrity, perseverance, altruism, etc. All these virtues have to be followed by each and every one of us to bring down the prevalence of mental health issues. 
Therefore, only these are the ways by which mental health issues can be waned because as covid-19 pandemic, mental health issues also do not have any vaccine.

References :- 

1.Payel, Covid-19: Rise in mental health issues indicates need to change our priorities2020  inventiva<Covid19_%20Rise%20In%20Mental%20Health%20Issues%20Indicates%20Need%20To%20Change%20Our%20Priorities%20_%20Inventiva.html> accessed June 29, 2020.
2.PriyaMenon, spike in self harm, suicide ideation amid Covid pandemic 2020 The times of India<Mental%20health_%20‘Spike%20in%20self-harm,%20suicide%20ideation%20amid%20Covid-19%20pandemic’%20-%20Times%20of%20India.html> accessed June 25, 2020
3.Achalbhagat, Covid-19 will aggravate mental health issues| Analysis 2020 Hindustantimes <Covid-19%20will%20aggravate%20mental%20health%20issues_%20Analysis%20-%20analysis%20-%20Hindustan%20Times.html>accessed may 05 2020.