Mental Health: A Growing Crisis in America Post Pandemic
Mental health issues in America, particularly among teens, are on the rise. Many young Ohioans had difficulty during the lockdown, unable to experience life as normal. In addition to a major financial setback, the pandemic also contributed to a rise in mental health related issues.
The virus caused most of the country to lock down. Teens who thrive on interaction with their peers suffered from separation anxiety and the effects of isolation. They had to remain apart, unable to hang out and simply be free-spirited kids.
Unfortunately, it's a year they can't get back. Those with a pre-existing social anxiety disorder also had difficulty, further enhancing their fears of social settings, seriously affecting achieved progress. Whether COVID-19 related or signs revealed prior to the lockdown, if you have concerns over your child and social anxiety, a social anxiety test is available.
The teen years are very important to the development of social skills. Teens often spend weekends at a sporting event, the mall or their friends' home. The pandemic prevented an entire year of these types of interactions. Schools, a social hub for young adolescents, were closed. Malls, sporting venues, and just about anything else where you can gather socially. Basically, the only places that remained open were grocery and convenience stores and gas stations.
Just think for a minute about what teens missed. They didn't play sports, put on their school play, have their junior or senior prom, and missed out on a once-in-a-lifetime achievement, their graduation. As a result, many teens suffered from depression. They remained in their room, instead of hanging out with other family members. They stopped talking to friends on social media and slept more often than necessary. Since teens are typically moody, it can be difficult for parents to see the warning signs. If you feel your teen is depressed, seek professional help.
Loss of Income
Many adults who previously enjoyed a good quality of life, now find themselves without income. They lost their business, something that took years to develop or lost a good-paying job. Even though Ohio is now open for business, it can take a few years to regain financial stability. That could lead to drug or alcohol use as a way to cope. Unfortunately, escaping reality isn't going to solve the problem. If you developed a drinking problem or now use drugs as a result of the lockdown, there are resources at your disposal.
Returning to Living
The good news for many currently with mental-health issues is that post-pandemic you can return to your normal way of life. The anxiety and depression symptoms will subside once you return to school or work. However, others who lost everything or had signs of depression pre-pandemic, are likely to manifest these feelings for much longer. Keep in mind, unresolved issues will make it difficult to get on with your life.
A New World
Those with an anxiety disorder prior to the pandemic might still be afraid to leave their home for fear they will catch the virus. If you have not received a firm diagnosis from a mental health professional and are waiting to be seen, you should consider taking a panic disorder test to see if you could possibly be suffering from generalized panic disorder or anxiety. With half the country vaccinated and millions of Americans previously having COVID-19, the odds of getting the virus are lessening. If you are vaccinated, you can find comfort that you are protected. Take daily precautions such as washing your hands after venturing out to stores and other public places that draw crowds.
The pandemic of 2020 affected the mental health of millions of Americans. Fortunately, for most, a return to life as normal will restore their mental health. However, for those with a previous diagnosis or undiagnosed mental health problems, the journey can be much longer.
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