According to recent research, the coronavirus-related lockdown had a “major impact” on the UK’s mental health as many people were experiencing suicidal thoughts.
The University of Glasgow, who led the study, discovered that young people and women from more socially-disadvantaged backgrounds and those with pre-existing mental health conditions reported the most critical mental wellbeing issues during the pinnacle of the pandemic.
Published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, the study examines three periods between 31 March and 11 May 2020. It is the most comprehensive analysis of how over 3,000 UK adults coped during the initial weeks of lockdown when the Government gave strict rules to stay home.
The purpose was to reflect on a range of mental health issues, including depression, loneliness, self-harm and suicide attempts.
According to the study, there was a “creeping rise” in suicidal thoughts from 8 per cent to 10 per cent. These thoughts were the highest amongst adults aged 18 to 29 years, which increased from 12.5 per cent to 14 per cent.
Despite these rises being seemingly small, researchers are concerned about the short amount of time in which they developed.
Only one in four respondents revealed they encountered moderate levels of depressive indications.
Professor Rory O’Connor, Chair in Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow’s Institute of Health and Wellbeing, states that “Levels of anxiety decreased during the same period, but that relates to the past. Suicidal thoughts are about looking to the future.
“It suggests that the huge social and economic uncertainty associated with Covid-19 may be causing some people to feel hopeless. However, there is currently no evidence that the suicide rate is increasing.”
Therefore, the Department of Health in England stated there would be more investment in mental health services, following this discovery.
Every year, one in four people will experience a mental health problem.
We work with specialists and community team to build a care and support plan around the symptoms, needs, wishes and chosen lifestyle of each client so that we can maximise independence and quality of life.
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