According to a Poll: Coronavirus Affects Almost Half of the U.S. Population’s Mental Health

Americans tend to live a rich and hectic day-to-day life at work. When it suddenly came to a halt and people had to either live alone or only with their close family, the effect on their mental health was immediate.

A Nationwide Psychological Trauma

The COVID-19 pandemic is not just ending lives and destroying the country’s economy, it is also causing mental health issues to tens of millions of Americans. A poll conducted at the end of March, by the Kaiser Family Foundation, has come back with results showing that 45% of adults believe they are suffering from mental health issues caused by the trauma the coronavirus has had on their life. Furthermore, 19% consider that it has had a major impact on them.

Contrary to the physical effects of the coronavirus, which caused a greater number of deaths in men, the psychological scar it leaves behind seems to be stronger on women. Hispanic and black adults are also more affected than the rest of the population. To a certain degree, the poll is a relief to a lot of Americans, as they feel less alone facing this psychological trauma while many were looking for answers on an online health magazine.

Uncertainty Causes Anxiety

A clinical psychologist from Washington, specializing in anxiety disorders, notes that although it is not necessarily surprising in the wake of the disturbances the coronavirus has caused, it is still a very high number. The symptoms are numerous, and they go from being scared to anxious, depressed and sleep deficiency. According to the Doctor, they are caused by being away from the work environment as well as social distancing; both elements of social isolation. The quantity of people getting sick and dying from the virus is also affecting everyone strongly. The media exposure this crisis is getting is not helping, as everywhere you turn you see and hear more bad news.

Uncertainty is one of the major causes of anxiety. In a regular life, it is a cause for stress, but with the coronavirus amplifying the feeling (since no one knows when it will end and if life will become normal again rapidly or not), it has become a difficult burden to bear for many individuals. Also, having more free time to ourselves to think about concepts, we usually don’t have time to shake some of our beliefs and augment this sentiment of uncertainty in our lives.

Coping Mechanisms

There are ways to lower our anxiety and to ease the tension that we feel. The first is to write down all of our fears on paper or on our computer. There are two reasons to do so: The first is that you will comprehend better why you are feeling the way you are, and it will also give you a chance to literally “leave your worries behind.” If you feel comfortable enough to share these frights with someone else that you trust, they may find the right words to soothe you or you may realize that they also share your feelings, making it easier for you to live with them.