COVID-19 pandemic may cause long-term mental health issues

The coronavirus pandemic, which has brought sickness, death, and disruption to daily life for millions of people worldwide, may also bring long-term mental health effects, according to a June 8, 2020 article in Business Insider.

“Initially for all of us, there [was] a lot of uncertainty and people feeling out of control,” said Karestan Koenen, professor of psychiatric epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and one of the experts featured in the article. “Events that are threatening, are uncontrollable, and have a lot of uncertainty are really toxic to mental health,” she said.

People with a history of mental illness are at risk of a relapse during this time, Koenen said, and those dealing with a chronic mental illness are at even more risk of feeling isolated as support systems may be unavailable during the pandemic.

Koenen recommends that people practice positive coping habits like taking a walk or meditating, and that they be aware of their emotions and reach out to someone for help if they need to.

Koenen was also quoted in a June 9, 2020 article in Elemental focusing on the biological and emotional aspects of anger and rage—feelings that are running deep in the U.S. as the country faces its history of police brutality and racial injustice.

Read the Business Insider article: 13 potential long-term effects the coronavirus pandemic could have on mental health

Read the Elemental article: This is your brain on anger