As the pandemic persists, we see the highest anxiety and depression levels reported since the pandemic hit the U.S. in March. This is a troubling trend being fueled by loneliness and isolation. We are also seeing alarming numbers of children reporting thoughts of suicide and self-harm.
As the physical risks of the pandemic become better managed with vaccine progress, the crisis’s mental darkness will be harder to overcome. We don’t have a vaccine for our mental health like we do for our physical health. It is going to take longer to come out of the mental and emotional challenges.
While the data from 2020 can seem discouraging, it was also a year of turning inward, with more people becoming proactive about their mental health. 2020 has taught us that instead of sticking metaphorical Band-Aids on things, escaping from symptoms, or merely chasing temporary relief, we have to look at the source and redesign a life. Another good thing that has emerged from the pandemic is easier access to mental health care via tele-mental health.
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