Is COVID-19 pandemic behind rising cases of depression & anxiety in India among women and youths?

According to a medical journal, The Lancet, a sharp rise has been seen in cases of depression and anxiety during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, and especially among women and youths

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NH Web Desk

According to a medical journal, The Lancet, a sharp rise has been seen in cases of depression and anxiety during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, and especially among women and youths.

Social restrictions, lockdowns, school and business closures, loss of livelihood, decline in economic activity, and shifting priorities of governments in their attempt to control Covid-19 outbreaks, all these factors led to the negative impact on the mental health of people.

According to a study, women were worse affected by the social and economic consequences of the pandemic as "Additional caring and household responsibilities tend to fall on women, and women are more likely to be victims of domestic violence, which increased at various stages of the pandemic".

Moreover, the shutting down of schools and colleges restricted young people's ability that led to negative impact on mental health among 20-24-year-olds.


The pandemic's impact on mental health is, however, not limited to India. The Lancet study also analysed the data across North America, Europe, and East Asia. The researchers modelled the expected prevalence of depression and anxiety.

A report published by UNICEF in October also revealed the mental health impact of the pandemic on children and young people in India. It warned that they could feel the impact on their mental health and well-being for many years to come.

The Indian Psychiatric Society and the Indian Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health have also studied the long-term consequences of the pandemic and lockdowns on children's emotional well-being and mental health.

Mental health experts stress that it's important to tackle the problem immediately to prevent it from turning into a major health and social crisis.

Besides, India faces a shortage of psychiatrists and mental health experts as well. At present, the country has about 9,000 psychiatrists, which accounts for less than one psychiatrist for every 100,000 people, which is far less than the desired figure of three psychiatrists per 100,000.

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