How has the pandemic affected children's mental health?

The global coronavirus pandemic has toppled millions of lives out of balance. Although it has been over two years with varying degrees of disease burden, it continues to wreak havoc in lives in a manner indescribable. While people worldwide grappled with the loss of dear ones, financial constraints, running from pillar to post to procure oxygen cylinders and struggling with sudden lifestyle changes, little did they realise that the pandemic had silently engulfed the most vulnerable of all – the children.

Children constitute 28% of the world’s population. Children’s formative years are crucial to their overall development in terms of physical, mental, emotional, and behavioural personality. The concept of the pandemic, universal upheavals, massive loss of lives, and everything coming to a standstill owing to recurrent lockdowns is challenging for children to comprehend.

This blog illuminates research conducted by psychiatric experts from the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) and the Indian Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health (IACAMH) and the steps to improve the mental health and well-being of children.

As children resorted to e-learning, many of them encountered several difficulties such as lack of educational resources, which were available only while going to school, nutritional needs that would have been fulfilled with mid-day or lunch meals provided at schools etc. In addition, children with pre-existing mental difficulties displaying improved mental and social behaviour were left detached from their positive environment all of a sudden, which made their psychological wellness take a turn for the worse.

  • Erroneous circadian rhythm due to lack of sunlight exposure and sleep
  • A rise in Vitamin – D deficiency, insomnia, fatigue, migraine, eye disorders, neck and spinal issues
  • Rampant behavioural addictions such as gaming disorders, binge-watching, porn addiction
  • Low awareness of group skills and behaviour
  • Lack of awareness of one’s surroundings, practical concepts, worldly knowledge etc.
  • Increased irritability, fear, clinginess
  • Increase in sadness, loneliness, suicidal thoughts etc.
  • Higher depression levels in adolescents

In a preview article, The State of the World’s Children 2021, brought forth by United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), almost 1 in 5 young people aged 15–24 reportedly expressed often feeling depressed while some felt little or no interest in doing things. In addition, diagnosed mental disorders such as ADHD, anxiety, autism, bipolar disorder, conduct disorder, depression, eating disorders, intellectual disability, and schizophrenia appeared predominant in young children and adolescents in the last two years. If left untreated, they can cause significant harm to the children’s health and their terms of education, life outcomes, and earning capacity.

Many governments, institutions, NGOs, and volunteers worldwide have urged nations to break the silence surrounding mental illness by addressing stigma and promoting a better understanding of mental health. Furthermore, the challenges, inhibitions and other negative aspects experienced by children that are difficult to express are being considered. This will help a great deal in providing the necessary relief measures and positive therapies like hypnosis toronto for depression and anxiety, mood disorder, borderline personality disorder treatment, bipolar disorder treatment, depression treatment, phobia treatment, etc.

If your child or children of someone you know seem to be facing mental, psychological or behavioural difficulties or symptoms, it is wise to go for the first opinion. SeekMed offers you easy access to ‘Best Psychiatrists in India‘. Take a first or second opinion or follow up with the best mental health doctor or psychologist doctor who can help you ratify diagnosis and explore the best treatment plans that are affordable and offer quality care. Get effective e-consultations for social phobia treatment, anxiety, mood disorder treatment, borderline personality disorder treatment, depression and anxiety treatment, personality disorder treatment, bipolar disorder treatment, depression treatment, and phobia treatment. The ‘Best Psychiatrists in India’ representing the SeekMed panel are medical alumni from international universities like the UK, US, etc. In addition to working in reputed medical hospitals in India, they are also recipients of the Padma awards, BC Roy Award, and many more laurels. So search for mental health doctor or psychologist doctor, and you shall gain the confidence to take control of your medical decisions with the help of SeekMed.

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