The entire study has been published in The Lancet Psychiatry
Depression and anxiety in individuals peaked during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, but declined rapidly as soon as people started adapting to their new life circumstances, according to study results published in The Lancet Study.
Daisy Fancourt, PhD, from the department of behavioral science and health at the University College London and colleagues wrote that some sources had stated that the mental health rates started deteriorating before the stay-at-home orders were initiated. Their next job was to find out if mental health continued to deteriorate as the lockdown went on, or to find out if there were moments of stabilization or improvement.
Did it really improve?
To understand the mental states of individuals over the 20 weeks since widespread lockdowns were announced in England, data from 36,520 participants were analyzed in the UCL COVID-19 Social Study.
Results showed an average depression score of 6.6 and an average anxiety score of 5.7 in the first week. In the following 20 weeks, both scores declined, with the fastest declines recorded between weeks 2 and 5. The factors for depression and anxiety at the start were mostly found in women, people with lower education and income, ones with preexisting mental health concerns, or ones living alone or with children.
We currently have high chances of going into future lockdowns, so it’s important to support individuals on the weeks leading up to the lockdown so that their mental health doesn’t get seriously affected. But the good part in all of this is that the individuals might be able to quickly adapt to psychological demands of life under lockdowns. That doesn’t mean those with the means and mentality to support shouldn’t lend a helping hand to the ones in need.